The season is almost at a close, but the battle for supremacy rages on.
This was easily the toughest vote for me so far this season, as both top series delivered absolutely stellar episodes. It seems as if that was the case for the rest of the team, too, as this was one of the closest votes so far. As usual no other series came especially close, but we did see our first-ever votes for a couple of series (like Fukigen na Mononokean, which I almost ranked myself).
As for the “Ask the Writers” question this week, this was about as close to consensus as we’ve gotten on a topic. Again the question proved much more difficult to answer than I initially thought, but a lot of our writers clearly have similar views – which is surprising, given how different our tastes in actual series tend to be.
Here are this week’s results:
Weekly Staff Poll
Ask The Writers
If you could only watch one genre of anime (be as specific or general as you want, within reason) for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
- Stars: Another tough question. For the most part, I’ve really stuck to the fantasy genre for just about every piece of media I consume. It’s that element of escapism that really appeals to me. Real life is already filled with so many relationship issues and mundane struggles that watching a series filled with a cast undergoing similar struggles seems redundant, somehow. It’s not just that, though. I’ve always enjoyed fantasy world-building. Learning about fictional landscapes, religions, cultures, and politics feels is a pleasant exercise for my brain. How would X effect Y? What if Napoleon rode dragons into battle? What if magic was available to everyone? Fantasy in animation is a medium where anything and everything can happen. It’s an indirect reflection on our lives and trials that makes them more palatable. There’s always going to themes of doubt, self-worth, growing up, and finding that special someone, but when we view them through a fantastical lens, it’s like watching a fire from a distance. Not close enough to burn, but still close enough to feel the heat.
- Enzo: This is another one of those questions that’s tougher than it seems. The really challenging part is how flexible the genre definitions can be, and how a single series can merit many of them. I often find I have shows that combine my favorite genres – sports anime with romance, sci-fi with coming-of-age, et al. But as I look at my lifelong anime list, the only honest answer I can give based on what I’ve tended to grade highest is fantasy – it touches more of my favorite anime than any other genre. If you like, call it “Japanese fantasy” – stuff that’s embodied in Shinto and other Japanese notions, like Mushishi, Natsume Yuujinchou and Anohana. Be it historical fantasy (Seirei no Moribito), romantic fantasy (Akatsuki no Yona), or “pure” fantasy like Mushishi, fantasy is a part of the blend with my favorite series more than any other genre.
- Stilts-nii: Fantasy. Obviously. Fantasy adventure, if you want to be specific. I write fantasy adventure novels. Obvious answer.
- Passerby: Answering ‘fantasy’ feels like cheating as fantasy is far and away the broadest anime genre and all manner of shows can be argued to fall under it. I’m an anime generalist who likes to sample across the spectrum, so if I’m forced to choose I’ll prioristise hanging onto as much as possible. I’m also the kind of guy who wishes for more wishes, of course I’m going to cheat.
- Choya: I’m going with Comedy because so many of the shows I like to watch at my own leisure all fall under the genre. Whether it’s to relax or just have a great laugh, its nice to have a wide range of anime available that are able to easily hit the spot. Even better are comedy series where you see gradual character development over time since it gives me the illusion of enjoying high-brow entertainment, but also strikes me at my core when an otherwise humorous character gets a level of respect and emotional range that give them more significance and meaning than the gags that happen with them or the quirks that define them. Because of the vast array of anime that qualify as comedies, I also would have a large pool to select from, whether they are focused on romance, action, or healing.
- Pancakes: Sci-fi without a doubt, because nothing else comes close to satisfying both my history and technology itches (cyberpunk is amazing didn’t you know?). Also when everything from quasi-magic space opera to near future isekai and even comedy (*looks at Space Patrol Luluco*) falls under its wings I won’t be missing out on too much material to binge when the anime watching urge hits.
- Zaiden: If it counts, coming-of-age is the genre I’d pick. It covers so much ground, and as someone who typically watches shows for the characters and their development, most of my favourite kind of shows would remain available to me.