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Japanator Awards 2016: Christian's Top 5 Anime of the Year

4:00 PM on 01.01.2017 // Christian Chiok
  @ShonenChris

Emotional Coasters, Boobs, Food, & More!

With another batch of enjoyable anime released this year, another Top 5 article was certainly obligatory. Unfortunately, just like last year, I didn’t invest my time much in Anime and spent it a lot more video games instead, though I watched a lot of series, enough that it wasn’t hard for me to come up with a list. Despite my list not being too strong this year (I would say I watched at least 20 series this year), 2016 was packed with good anime and certainly will be a memorable one.

Not only that, but 2016 also marks the year FUNimation and Crunchyroll combined forces to provide series like Dragon Ball Super as well as other FUNimation licenses series via Crunchyroll’s streaming service — certainly a power move for the anime industry. As an anime fan, I’m certainly happy that the Anime industry is moving and moves like this will certainly make anime streamlined to watch. With this, I’ll be able to watch more series next year, hopefully.

Without further ado, here is my top series of 2016. Hopefully, you enjoyed them as well. 

[Editor's Note: As with last year's Japanator Awards, our lists are arranged in order, with our #1 pick being our favorite of the year. To qualify for inclusion in the Japanator awards, a candidate must have concluded a broadcast run or season ("cour") within the calendar year of 2016.]

5. Keijo!!!!!!!!!

This series had to make it into the list somehow, right? Like many have said before, Keijo!!!!!!!!! Is definitely the gem of the season. Keijo offers the flashiness similar to Kuroko’s Basketball, where techniques are exaggerated and shown as attacks from your typical Shonen series. Additionally, it manages to combine both a wacky and serious tone quite well.  From the outside, it may look like a perverted series of clashing boobs and ass. From the inside, however, the series is about an intense sport called Keijo and the hardship of many of the students that work to be the best at it.  If you like sport series, I would definitely recommend it. Don’t let the wackiness fool you. Additionally, Aoba is definitely the best girl in the series.

4. Haikyuu (Season Two & Three)

Aside Kuroko’s Basketball, Haikyuu is definitely one of my favorite sport series in recent anime history. While it doesn’t give out the same intense for “Dragon Ball in sports” feel, the series does a good job at keeping you at the edge of your seat. Coming from Production I.G, the animation is certainly phenomenal as well.

Both seasons, the second one which started last year but ended this year and the third one which both aired and concluded this year were certainly enjoyable. Both protagonist, Shoyo Hinata, and deuteragonist, Tobio Kageyama, made tremendous development in both seasons. This isn’t saying that the rest of the Karasuno team didn’t make any development, but these two guys went through a lot which eventually made them better characters. I don’t think Volleyball is as interesting as Basketball, and not to mention, Haikyuu isn’t as unrealistic as Kuroko’s Basketball. Still, a lot of the plays were quite intense and watching them in anime form was enjoyable thanks to Production I.G.

3. Shokugeki no Souma: Ni no Sara

Just like last year, Shokugeki no Souma delivered once again with its craziness and delicious plates. Additionally, I also appreciated the references put in some of the matches, especially the one with Megumi and Ryo where both of them had Stands. The tournament arc was quite enjoyable to watch as well — from its delicious food to the same intensity that you get from watching a sport series. My thoughts haven’t changed from last year when I put the first season on my top as well. The series features a variety of characters with different personalities who are certainly memorable.

2. Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure: Diamond is Unbreakable

If you took your time to read my Top 5 from last year (which I’m thankful for if you did), then you saw this one coming, because I did say I was going to automatically make it my Top 5 of 2016. To me, Diamond is Unbreakable is the best Jojo arc for many reasons. First, it features one of the best villains ever featured in a Shounen series, if not the best. He isn’t your generic “I am evil just because” or “I turned evil because I got friendzoned (looking at you, Obito). Yoshikage Kira has a unique background compared to other villains, and his purpose of doing what he does is unique as well. To add, Killer Queen was great antagonistic stand.

Just like it features a great villain, the series though has a great protagonist as well. Joseph and Jotaro are great, and while Giorno Giovanna is my favorite JoJo, Josuke Higashikata definitely comes in second. He’s a hilarious character with a great personality but when it comes to being serious, he’s not playing around. Just like his father, he’s certainly a smart fighter as well. The side characters such as Jotaro, Joseph, Okuyasu and especially Koichi add to the series as well.

1. Orange

This is the series that a lot of people in my circle called “If Clannad and Erased had a baby,” including myself of course. However, Orange’s traveling concept isn’t the same as Erased’s. In Orange, the protagonist, Naho Takiyama received letters from her future self to save her classmate, Kakeru Naruse, from comitting suicide. Each letter details on the things present Naho must do to save present Kakeru.

Similarly to Clannad, Orange will also take you through the feelings roller coaster, similarly to the former. You’ll find yourself easily attached to many of the characters and feel what they are going through, which is an accomplishment considering the length of the series. I’m no afraid to admit that I shed some tears here and there watching the series. My only gripe is that the series was a bit short but perhaps it’s better if it was “short and sweet.”

Honorable Mentions: Mob Psycho 100, Yuri On Ice, Re:Zero, My Hero Academia, Erased, All-Out, and Drifters.



Christian Chiok, Contributor
 Follow Blog + disclosure ShonenChris Tips
Christian has been a gamer since his early childhood. He's a big fan of the King of Fighters and the Metal Slug series. Additionally, Christian enjoys cooking, listening to music, watching anime ... more   |   staff directory





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