10 Anime I Most Enjoyed

I think that there’s something really special about discussing the things that you like. While I do not find that I always agree with people’s favourites when it comes to anime or other media, there’s something enjoyable about seeing people’s passion when it comes to the things they love. Positivity is such a fantastic force! For some time I found it really difficult to decide on things which I liked the most. Perhaps I felt that by naming something as ‘more enjoyable’ or ‘better’ that I was locked into that decision. I know that there’s other bloggers who have expressed their difficulties in this regard. Still, as I’ve grown to enjoy seeing others share their enthusiasm, I thought I’d share a little of mine regarding the things I like.

This is my list of anime which I would consider favourites. If anyone wanted to contrast my picks with my highest-rated series on anime tracking sites, you would notice there is some difference. I score on tracking sites both based on personal enjoyment and technical construction (animation quality, effectiveness of storytelling, sound design and so on) whereas selections here are series which I found exceptionally enjoyable. Some of them have obvious weaknesses, but I find them exceedingly engaging, delightful, and just plain fun! These shows may not be your favourites. In fact I doubt they are your favourites. I don’t expect people to have a wholly shared list of favourite anime by any means! I also do not consider this list to be permanent by any means, and I may make changes in the future. At the time of writing this post, I’ve completed about 280 series (some of which are parts of the same franchise or sequels), so 10 is probably about 5% of what I’ve seen overall. If I find that over time that additional series stand out to me, I may also upgrade this from a top 10 to a top (other number), or rearrange the placement of some of these titles.

10. Fullmetal Alchemist (2003)

Edward Elric from Fullmetal Alchemist raises his arms in the airI know that a lot of people prefer Brotherhood of the two series, but this is my list of anime and I liked the 2003 series more. The differing strengths of the two shows perhaps deserve a post in their own right. Fullmetal Alchemist was one of the earliest anime series I saw and it helped me become aware of the scope of anime and the sort of stories it can tell. The story balances action and drama with light-hearted comedy, works with both simple familial affection and the fate of nations, and has a world which is rich with setting and scenery.

9. Yakitate!! Japan

Kyosuke from Yakitate Japan stares at a mountain-shaped breadIt’s a shounen anime about baking bread. It has the things which I really enjoy about the shounen genre (a warm-hearted but inexperienced protagonist, tournament arcs and ridiculous reactions), and it’s also packed with puns. Japan loves their puns, and I always have a fun giggle when I have enough Japanese language knowledge to ‘get’ some of them, which happened a few times in the series. The series knows that it’s really goofy and just runs with it, and I’d also consider it a plus that it has a not excessive for a shounen series 69 episode length so it’s not full of too much padding. As a bonus, I learnt a bit about baking bread (additional verification shows many of the baking techniques used in the show could actually be applied in real life, although perhaps with less ridiculous reactions).

8. Wakakozake

Wakako of Wakakozake sighs after enjoying a good mealSomething which I really enjoy is going out and trying different foods at different restaurants. Wakakozake captures the atmosphere of going somewhere different and enjoying a meal by yourself with great descriptions of food and fantastic sound design. It makes me feel like I’d stepped into a different restaurant or bar for a few minutes each time I watch an episode. It’s a simple series of shorts which both relaxes me and makes me a little hungry. For people who can’t get enough Wakakozake, there’s also a live action version, but that falls outside of the realm of anime and has a slightly different feeling to it.

7. Daily Lives of High School Boys

Nichibros01Sometimes referred to as Nichibros, I really enjoyed this show because it had an excellent balance between the absurd and things which high school boys would actually do. Whilst I was never a high school boy myself, I did go to high school and got to know some high school boys at the time. I could imagine my friends reacting in similar ways to some of the situations which played out in the show. I love this because I feel the the comedy is really immersive and it made me feel a little like I was a high school boy (or at least what I imagine high school boys to be like) as I watched.

6. The Tower of Druaga

Characters from Tower of Druaga are covered in mud while attempting to please the doorThis series (both Tower of Druaga: The Aegis of Uruk and its sequel Tower of Druaga: The Sword of Uruk) is my favourite example of the fantasy adventure genre in anime. It’s a lively adventure with a diverse cast of characters, and blends comic moments in with an exciting adventure. As the characters climb the tower, we find out more about their goals and motivations, and we see the disparate crew of adventurers band together in order to achieve a greater goal. It touches on many of the fun fantasy essentials like dragons and slimes, and also creates a very strong setting surrounding the Tower and the land of Uruk. I especially loved the alternate first episode; Jil’s Adventure, which both parodies adventure stories and also foreshadows some of the plot.

5. gdgd Fairies

gdgdfairies04gdgd Faries is a gdgd show.

To qualify this statement a little, I enjoyed it because it managed to capture the elements of ‘random’ comedy which I really like. While watching, I was never entirely certain what to expect, but I feel like each skit was amusing and had a satisfying payoff. This even includes the adlibbed Dubbing Lake section. Improvised comedy is by its very nature somewhat hit-and-miss, but gdgd Fairies had a cast which meant that I found it to be consistently amusing.

4. Humanity Has Declined

Mediator dances while surrounded by fairiesI loved the protagonist’s intelligent but cynical approach to the ridiculous situations thrown her way, the achronological presentation of the events of the series, and the visuals which are positively saturated with colour. I also think that it has some great clothing design, with the variety of vibrant outfits the characters wear which are both simple and yet have some lovely detailed touches. It seems that clothing production has not declined.

3. Servant x Service

Yamagami Lucy and Megumi Chihaya from Servant X Service eating lunchThis is a slice-of-life comedy about people working in civil service. So much anime is focussed on high school or middle school students, it’s always interesting to see a show where the protagonists are adults. Having experience working in an office job with some customer service elements, I can relate to quite a few of the events which occur. Servant x Service also contains a character who I relate to a lot; Yamagami Lucy. I know that some people say that they relate to a number of characters, but for me at least, this is a rare occurrence, and it felt like I was not only laughing at the characters, but I was also laughing at myself a little as I watched it.

2. Kemono Friends

KemonoFriends03This simple series simply won my heart. It has cute character designs, and tells a tale which manages to be both amusing, educational, and engrossing. I managed to both laugh and learn while watching, which are my two top priorities when it comes to enjoying media. I’m definitely a fan of simple things done well, and Kemono Friends is a perfect example of this. I would have not minded watching the series on the strength of the cute Friends alone, but realising that there was a mystery behind Japari Park and seeing the truth revealed over the course of the series elevated Kemono Friends from fun to outstanding in my eyes.

1. Azumanga Daioh

Mihama Chiyo from Azumanga Daioh surrounded by other studentsAzumanga Daioh is a series which I have been aware of since early on in my anime-watching days, but it was just something which I’d never got around to watching until relatively recently (2016). I’d always suspected that I’d like it, and since watching it, it makes me a little sad I didn’t watch it 10 or so years earlier. I have reviewed this series, but I honestly feel that my writing abilities did not do justice to my level of personal enjoyment. The cast of characters are quirky and lively, and the show really encapsulates the simple pleasures of the slice-of-life genre; finding enjoyment and laughter in the every day. The characters have fun and laugh, and I felt I was sharing in their laughter. I think that considering something to be a favourite is an innately personal experience, and I feel like Azumanga Daioh taps into the things which I highly enjoy in an anime on a very personal level.

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13 thoughts on “10 Anime I Most Enjoyed

  1. Thanks for sharing all these. I honestly have to admit that I haven’t seen any of these yet 🙈🙈 Yes I know, shame on me right?
    Everyone probably has their own favorite anime series, which is what is so awesome about it. What may work for someone else, might not be working for another. This was a cool list, and I hope to get around to a few of these at some point. Great post! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • There’s a good chance I may not have seen many of your favourites too! There is just so much anime out there, and even when it comes to relatively mainstream or well-regarded titles, there’s no guarantee that particular individuals have seen them (I’m yet to watch SAO for instance!).

      If you do end up checking any of these out, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. FMA, Yakitate Japan, and Danshi Koukousei! Yaaay! When I watched Shokugeki no Soma, I didn’t like (I still don’t) how they give fan service to describe how the taste is good and I missed Yakitate Japan’s way of showing the taste of the food because they’re really amusing albeit weird.

    This reminded me that I started Servant x Service and haven’t finished it yet. I guess I should start it from the beginning again. orz

    Liked by 1 person

    • I tried Soma when it came out after enjoying Yakitate Japan so much, but I was definitely deterred by the amount of fanservice in (at least the early) episodes. Yakitate Japan kept things pretty goofy throughout the series.

      Hopefully you also enjoy Servant X Service. I definitely find myself having to restart series from time-to-time if I only watch a few episodes and then leave it for a while!

      Liked by 1 person

      • There’s still a lot of fan service even in the later parts of the series, though. Even in the manga. I can’t even reason out to myself that it’s because it’s shounen because even Yakitate Japan is one. Anyway, I’m glad someone here loves that, too! It’s a bit old so I think not many remember it.

        I sometimes think it’s a waste of time, but my grasp of the story will be affected if I don’t do it, so I have no other choice. Sighsss

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Awesome list! I’m glad to see Tower of Druaga get some love. I really enjoyed the alternate first episode as well, despite not realizing it wasn’t the actual first episode when I watched it. Imagine my confusion! I was also almost certain Servant x Service would be on your list! So that was nice to see.
    I have never heard of Yakitate!! Japan, but now that I know I can learn new ways to bake bread, I just might have to give it a try. I can only hope my expression and enthusiasm matches that character’s in the picture you used.
    Anyways, thanks for the great post 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • My husband had already seen the series, so he told me that this was an alternate version (I believe the joke version aired in Japan on TV, and the regular version was the special). I can imagine you would have been confused watching Druaga without knowing this, owing to the massive tonal shift between the first and second episode!

      Yakitate!! Japan shares some elements with Shokugeki no Soma, but the reactions involve considerably less exploding clothes. 🙂 It’s also packed to the brim with terrible puns!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you for sharing your list of anime series that you enjoyed. I haven’t seen all of the series you mentioned, but I do think highly of Daily Lives of High School Boys, Servant x Service, and Kemono Friends.

    Liked by 1 person

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