Thank You, I Love You All, and Goodbye

Eight and a half years. It’s been eight and a half years since I first joined as a writer at Random Curiosity. It’s odd to think of it in retrospect, how an email rattled off to Divine at just the right time led to nearly a decade of writing about anime for people all around the world. In that time I’ve watched hundreds of anime and taken thousands of screenshots. I’ve managed RandomC’s day-to-day operations, making sure schedules were decided upon and previews went out on time, more or less. I’ve written editorials, taken part in podcasts, and published over a thousand blog posts, good for Top 5 among authors on this site to date … and when you factor in my legendary wordiness, particularly in those early days, I’ve probably published more words than most.

It’s odd to bring something like that to an end. It’s even more odd to wax nostalgic about what amounts to a decades-long unpaid part-time job. Yet here we are, as I indulge in some hard-earned nostalgia in this, my 1,056th, and final, RandomC post.

The Best of Anime 2019

Now that 2019 is officially over, it’s time for our annual foray into annoying everyone with our questionable opinions, the Best of Anime 2019 post! Unlike last year, and serving as a throwback to previous iterations, this will consist of a collaboration between writers. That would be me (Zaiden), Choya and Pancakes. We didn’t quite manage 100+ shows this year, but we heavily focused on watching entries that made a serious clamour within the anime community. This is a first for us and we’ll inevitably get things wrong. So please feel free to be brutally honest while giving us constructive feedback.

Continuing from last year, there are numerous categories in the following areas: Production, Miscellaneous, Genre, and Notable Others. Due to lack of series candidates, and/or the belief that we may not have watched enough shows to make an informed decision about specific genres, some categories have been omitted from previous years. Though in the outro, I’ve attempted to explain the reasoning behind their removal. And added back to this year’s post are the Studio, Plot Twist, Mystery, Sport, Underappreciated, and Exceeded Expectations categories. And we’ll welcome four new entries: ‘Betrayal’ being a reference to the online community meme, ‘Isekai’ and ‘Supernatural’ as their own separate categories from fantasy in recognition of their standalone popularity and noticeable differences from traditional fantasy, as well as ‘Greatest Trainwreck’ – which distinguishes itself from disappointment by being a hotly anticipated mess of epic proportions. Without further ado, let’s get started!

Disclaimer: As always, disclaimers abound. Please keep in mind that “best” is subjective. What’s best for us isn’t necessarily best for you, and that’s perfectly fine. This list shouldn’t be taken as some kind of inviolable truth, but rather the opinions of three chaps who had too much time on their hands and spent it conjuring up a list of picks based on all the anime they watched. Naturally, our choices will be influenced by our own tastes, experiences, and personal impressions. Before you go bashing one of our choices, please make sure you’ve at least seen it and know where we’re coming from. Finally, all we ask is that you respect our opinions and the opinions of others in the comments, just like we respect yours. Thank you.

Disclaimer #2: The choices in this post are not reflective of the opinions of all Random Curiosity writers. They are solely the opinions of myself (Zaiden), Choya and Pancakes, save for where otherwise noted. Thank you for your understanding.

Note: For a show to be considered, it has to have met the requirements outlined in the Reader’s Choice Poll. For OVAs/movies, the additional requirement is that it’s been either released on BD or DVD, so that viewers outside of Japan have had a chance to watch it.

**This will be up top for the next few days, so don’t forget to scroll past for new posts!

Reader’s Choice – Best of Anime 2019 Poll

The end of the year is here and it’s time for the 14th Annual Reader’s Choice poll. Do you have a favorite series you’d like to see win? Are you just curious to see what everyone else enjoyed this year? There’s no electoral college here. The anime with the most votes wins!

Note: To give viewers more time to vote, the polls will close this year at 3:00 PM PST on January 3rd, giving you the most time possible before the Best of Anime post comes out with the results. This means the 3:00 PM in the afternoon in PST or 11:00 PM GMT on the 3rd.

Welcome To a Brand New Us

You may have noticed something different.

Yes, we’re finally dragging Random Curiosity kicking and screaming into the mobile age. I know, I know, we’re about five years late to the party, but that’s the trouble with running a site with 13,000 published posts, and yes, that’s the correct number of zeroes. There’s lots to make sure will still work when you make a major update.

Introduction – “My chariot will blaze a path anywhere you wish!”

Hello hello! I’m Iskendaris and it’s lovely to meet you. In true anime fashion, I blushed when asked to join RandomC – someone pinch me, is this real? My heart went dokidoki like a shoujo protagonist under sakura flowers on the first day of spring. “Ah,” I thought, “this is the moment when senpai notices me!”

As the middle child of a large family, anime was one of the few things that bonded us siblings together. Souryuuden, Gundam Wing, Flame of Recca and other typical shounen series were our daily staple, I’d watch them with my older brother every day and we’d play-fight the best action scenes with armour made of blankets and pillows. Later when my younger sister was born, we got her right up to speed with Macross Plus, Ruroni Kenshin, Visions of Escaflowne and more.

3pm – 6pm was the sacred time slot that we all lived by. It didn’t matter if we were in the middle of a sibling quarrel; time stopped. We’d stop fighting and tune in to AXN anime.

As a kid, I was watching anime regularly, but so was everyone else. Anime is different in East/Southeast Asia, almost everyone watches it. It’s not a big deal to watch anime or read manga as long as you weren’t too deep into it. Trains regularly advertise Pokémon collaborations, and even my mother knows what Card Captor Sakura is.

Introduction – Reach For the Stars!

Mou daijoubu, nazete? Watashi ga kita! For those of you who don’t know me yet, you can call me Stars. After following RandomC’s posts for years and years, I’m joining the RC crew as a shiny new writer. Since I’m going to be taking my position here very seriously, it’s important to know that I am fluent in Vine, anime, and movie references. Please feel free to converse with me in my native language at any time. It’s an honor to be here among such a talented group of people and I’m absolutely thrilled to be a part of what makes RandomC so amazing.

My exposure to anime started in the 90’s with Sailor Moon, but really hit its stride with Inuyasha, Dragonball Z, and Naruto in middle school. At first I was pretty adverse to watching them, but a friend of mine had a Sesshomaru plushie in her room that stole my heart, as well as copies of Inuyasha: Affections Touching Across Time and Inuyasha: Swords of an Honorable Ruler, which combined were more than enough to set me on my current path. Later on, thanks in no small part to RC’s recommendations, I expanded from the shonen genre and magical girls to include science fiction and mysteries like Steins;Gate, or the works of Gen Urobuchi, namely Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica and Psycho-Pass.

Introduction – Pretty Sure This Is Just a Dream

MissSimplice here, and as of this season, I’ll be joining the team of writers at RandomC. In fact, I was just telling the other writers how I have to pinch myself once in a while to remind myself that yes, this is reality. I’m going to go ahead and be cliché: words cannot describe how happy this makes me. But as the proper millennial I am, here’s a gif describing how I’ve felt since the day Stilts asked me to join the roster.

I’ve watched a horrendous amount of anime and to this day, I haven’t been able to keep track. My first memory is of sitting in my aunt’s 80’s-looking basement with my older cousins watching Sailor Moon’s colours pop and flash across the screen, which then evolved to late night Inuyasha and Dragon Ball episodes. I never knew what was going on but I loved it all the same. I specifically remember a moment when I blinked and my eyes teared bloody murder because I hadn’t blinked for some time. Keep in mind I was like…four or five.

A Gleam In Your … Nevermind

This quick announcement is to tell you all that Gleam, the new writer we brought on for this season, is no longer a part of Random Curiosity. We didn’t have a falling out or anything. The honest truth is that he disappeared. It’s embarrassing to admit that a writer went AWOL after three posts, because we put time and effort into giving him the tools to succeed at RandomC and he just … left. No idea why. Honestly we’re worried something bad might have happened, but we have no way of knowing when we reach out but receive no reply.

The reason I made a special post to tell you this, instead of bundling it into the schedule that will appear in the few days, is partially to explain why we’ll be covering fewer shows than expected this season. We tried to cover more, after all. But it’s also to ask anyone who’s interested in writing for Random Curiosity, or anyone who’s passionate about RC, to apply. We’re in the process of revamping the site (yes, that’s still happening) to make it smoother to read and easier to interact with, but the elemental truth is that if we don’t get more writers soon, RandomC will wither on the vine. We have a good stable of writers, but more and more of us have jobs and relationships and other responsibilities tugging at us, and we can’t devote time to blogging like we used to. The last few recruitment drives have seen fewer responses, but I know there are people excited about anime reading this who would love to contribute. I encourage those people to apply.

Send an email to stilts(at)randomc(dot)net if you’re interested. Thank you.