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Below is my top favorites in anime titles and characters. My top favorites in regards to my favorite anime based on enjoyability and for characters and seiyuu are those that I have a fondness for. I enjoy mainly the classic anime of the 80's and 90's because of the variety of anime that came out during that time, accompanied by the talented seiyuu, artists, and writers that brought these titles to life. When it comes to the modern anime shows, there's a handful of them I do like. However, when it comes to some anime series that are highly regarded by others, there will be some where I won't share the same opinion.
When it comes to the anime I watch/would like to watch, the criteria I look for is a good story/plot, likeable characters, and a talented cast of seiyuu. I also look for well-established character development when watching the anime. How I rate anime is by looking at the whole picture and not give something a good score just because it has a handful of good episodes. Enjoyment is key when I rate anime, most of those I rate 8-10 are those I like to re-watch. At times I'll watch a light-hearted/guilty pleasure anime that seems like it will be a fun watch and with those, I rate it differently than I would a serious anime.
When it comes to things like ecchi, I tend to like the ecchi shows of the 90's more because the female characters had realistic proportions and designed well, a good number of them were not placed in school settings, adult characters were among the main characters, voiced by a variety of talented seiyuu, and have a certain charm about them. I dislike recent ecchi shows because they're filled with bad, carbon-copy characters, hardly any set outside of those bland school/harem settings, horribly made with the god-awful shine to them, and voiced by the same, over-used seiyuu. I also dislike loli-con anime, shows with "imouto" and "onii-chan" in the title, and those long running shounen anime that goes on for 200+ episodes, they become a chore to watch and often run into predictable territory.
I feel in today's anime, it is lacking in having certain great female seiyuu that made their mark in the 80's and early 90's (like Megumi Hayashibara) in voicing main characters and are cast aside to supporting roles, which is sad. I'm mainly a fan of the female seiyuu that were active in the 80's and the 90's because I love their voices and those that I favor are excellent in terms of their acting and singing talent. I feel they deserve more respect, love, and fans than the currently popular ones. So I ask and encourage everyone to support veteran female seiyuu for their amazing talent in both voice acting and for some, their singing talent.
As a fan of older anime, I disagree with those who base their superficial arguments on disliking/not watching older anime because of the animation. When it comes to anime; the story-plot, characters, and how both progress is what counts, not what the series looks like or how pretty it is. I encourage everyone to watch older anime from the 80's and the 90's, there's plenty of awesome titles to choose from and you'd be surprised on how entertaining the classic anime titles are.
MY CHARACTERS OF THE MONTH-DIANNA SOREIL & KIHEL HEIM
My Characters of the Month for April 2014 I present to you are Turn A Gundam’s Kihel Heim and Queen Dianna Soreil; two of the most admirable, beautiful, courageous, graceful, strong, intelligent, and passionate young women of the Gundam meta-verse. Never in my experience with the Gundam meta-series since Mobile Suit Gundam Wing have I come across such fantastically written female characters such as Dianna and Kihel. The two of show they are multi-dimensional as characters throughout their experiences in the series when they switch identities and have their lives change forever. The two of them are beyond two people who share the same appearance; that the two have such a symbiotic relationship in their hearts that make it appear as if Kihel and Dianna are as one person. As individuals; Dianna is the revered Queen of the Moonrace, those human beings who have made the moon their home and Kihel is the eldest daughter of the Heim family, who run a mining business on Earth and works as the secretary of the nobleman Guin Sard Rhineford. The series takes place in the year 2345 C.C. in the far future after the latter period of the Dark History in which a catastrophic event had destroyed advanced technological civilization on Earth and in the current period of the story, human civilization has been rebuilt to the point of the early 20th century in the Anno Domini period. The tides change for the Terrans when they unearth the lost technologies of their past. I feel Yoshiyuki Tomino truly did a fantastic job in developing Dianna and Kihel’s characters, more-so than those of his Universal Century heroines who I feel are lacking in development. Even Sochie Heim proves to be an excellent, well-written heroine herself through her own experiences in the series. Both Dianna and Kihel are characters I feel deserve more love than they get, for when it comes to Gundam heroines, they go above and beyond in what they do in regards to the roles they have in the series and have fine qualities that make them excellent characters.
Dianna makes a return to Earth after many years in hopes that her subjects can return to the planet, now that the Earth has fully healed since the time of the Dark History ages ago that had reduced the Earth to ruin. She arrives in the sun-belt region of Earth in Ameria to negotiate with the Terrans to come to a peaceful arrangement. However, there are those among the Terrans who are against the idea of the Moonrace migrating to Earth and it leads to a major conflict between the two factions, which is something Dianna wished to avoid. Not only that, but Dianna has troubles with some of her own people; such as Phil Ackman, Agrippa Maintainer, and Gym Ghingham who challenge her authority as Queen and have caused civil conflicts within the people of the Moonrace through their ambitious actions. One of Dianna’s most loyal allies she has is Lieutenant Harry Ord of the Royal Guard, plus her three young scouts she had sent to Earth; Loran Cehack, Fran Doll, and Keith Laijee. Dianna has lived for quite a long time through cryogenic techniques exclusive to the Moonrace and previously lived a life on Earth long before the events of the main story with a man she loved named Will Game. When she takes on the identity of Kihel Heim early on in the series, she has an encounter with a man with the same name who is the grandson of the man she loved. The horrific death of the second Will Game leaves Dianna heartbroken. In her journey with Loran, the protagonist of the series and the youth who she had sent to Earth a couple of years before on a mission as a scout, alongside Fran and Keith, the two grow closer than that of a Queen and her subject…but as beloved friends who care deeply for one another. Yet not of the romantic sense as some may see judging from how the series ends. Loran himself is another like Harry who is loyal to Dianna and will do anything for her, he is the first to know that the “Lady Kihel” he has been with is actually Dianna herself. A major thing Dianna does in the guise of Kihel is when noblewoman Lily Borjano gets her work in assisting nurses at a field hospital for soldiers where she has to prep tools for a soldier who had to get his leg amputated. I am amazed at how much she tried to keep her composure through that particular ordeal and it is something I praise the ∀ Gundam series for showing as it is one component that is often seen in war stories.
Kihel Heim is the eldest daughter of Dylan Heim and his wife, who was given no name, and of a relatively wealthy family but not of the kind of stock that Guin and Lily have as nobles. Prior to the main story, Loran Cehack was hired to be her family’s servant and chauffeur after being rescued from drowning in the lake located near their home. She has a younger sister named Sochie who is rather tomboyish and leads a different life opposite of Kihel as a young pilot of the Militia, an Earth-based military who are the most vocal in the opposition against the Moonrace migrating to Earth. Kihel spends most of her time working alongside Guin and getting real world experience, rather than spend it in school and because of her work; she isn’t at home as often plus she has higher aims than that of her family’s business. Her father gets killed early on due to an incident caused by the Dianna Counter. Regardless, like Dianna, she strives for peace between both sides. A meeting between the two leads to an innocent game of switching each other’s identities and it becomes more involved as she and Dianna end up having to exist as the other person for an extended amount of time. She learns of her mother’s condition becoming worse as the death of her father had caused her mother great mental anguish. It happens to be at the time both she and Dianna switched identities when the two, Sochie, and Loran go to see her. Kihel gets teary-eyed when she is under the guise of Dianna when the real Dianna who is acting as her, spoke from the heart in front of the grave of Kihel’s father, a scene that speaks greatly of the strong connection in their hearts. As Dianna, Kihel has more passion and energy than the former, because of Dianna extended periods of being placed in and out of cryogenic stasis that has an effect on her physically, though she doesn’t show it. It leads Harry Ord to distinguish the two apart as he is closest to Dianna. Things get rather complicated for Kihel as Dianna because of the rebellious actions of Commander Phil and his faction, but she doesn’t lose her composure. Due to this complication, Harry makes several attempts to retrieve the real Dianna as to not endanger Kihel any further. During Kihel’s tenure as Queen Dianna, she and Harry develop a strong relationship of trust that leads to a romance between them later on. Although Harry does fall in love with Kihel and returns her own affections, it’s those feelings that conflict with his loyalties to the true Dianna of which he admits to Kihel.
Throughout the latter half of the series, she and Kihel will go back and forth in each other’s identities that often confuse both friend and foe as some believe Dianna to be Kihel and vice versa. The tragic era of the Dark History is also revealed in which Dianna, Kihel, and the others look at images from that time of all the wars that have been fought in their history. The Turn-A’s true power is also revealed from the time of the Dark History with the destructive Moonlight Butterfly. Plus, Guin Sard Rhineford’s true ambitions are brought into the light in his desire to make Earth the powerful force it once was in the past era. In the final battle against the forces of Gym Ghingham, Dianna makes peace with those who had rebelled against her and make amends for their actions. After Gym’s defeat, the long awaited peace between the Terrans and the Moonrace comes to fruition; Dianna and Kihel switch sides permanently as the former decides to live out the rest of her life on Earth with Loran who has left his true love, Sochie to tend to Dianna until her final days. Kihel becomes Queen Dianna for good with her beloved Harry by her side where she will lead the people of the Moonrace and continues to study the tragic era of the Dark History, although I still ponder how the alternate universes of G-Gundam, Gundam Wing, and Gundam X tie into the Dark History, though allegedly it states that Dianna Counter pilot Corin Nander is a relic from the AC era of Wing who was once an OZ soldier.
Thoughts on the Ending
It is likely that Sochie was left in the dark about Dianna and Kihel’s decision in the end, thus Sochie’s heartbreak in thinking that Loran had chosen her older sister. The ring on Dianna’s finger doesn’t symbolize that she and Loran have married, but is an old keepsake she had from her relationship with Will Game I, her true love. Also, I think the bond that Loran and Dianna have is a platonic love, not a romantic one. So, I’d like to think that Loran will return to Sochie someday.
Both characters are voiced by Rieko Takahashi, unfortunately she’s not a prolific seiyuu, barely has any notable roles, and it’s a shame she doesn’t have much on her résumé. Of what she has done for anime include; Sister Margaret of Freezing!, Ryuuka Jihiyou of the Hanaukyo Maid-tai series, Young Miroku of Inuyasha, Conis of One Piece, Yukino of Samurai 7, Neviril of Simoun, and Shinichiro’s Mother of True Tears. From hearing her voice, it’s pretty sad that someone with her talent isn’t more prolific. She is definitely has a wonderful, soothing quality to her voice, yet also commanding when she performed as Kihel in the scene as Dianna giving a riveting speech in the 18th episode of the series and as Dianna in leading her people to battle against Gym Ghingham. Rieko Takahashi is truly a fine seiyuu when it comes to voicing an elegant oujo-sama /onee-sama character. She would’ve been a great fit for a series like Maria-sama ga Miteru and even also Queen Starsha for the Space Battleship Yamato 2199 series as well.
This is the second ending theme to Turn A Gundam,”Tsuki no Mayu”, a song I feel fits both Dianna and Kihel. The video is one I made myself under my YT account as xMechaAngelx. Although I feel it would have been nice if they had made image songs for the characters though, I’m sure Rieko Takahashi likely has a lovely singing voice and I can imagine Dianna’s song would have a string quartet and Kihel’s song, a piano...or even a duet in the style akin to "Touch My Heart" from Devil Hunter Yohko in which Aya Hisakawa sang for both her characters, Yohko and Ayako.
Turn A Gundam ED #2-Tsuki no Mayu (Aki Okui)
I must admit I wasn’t into the series in the past, but thanks to a great friend here on MAL, VincentArisato, it is thanks to his encouragement and tremendous praise of the series that led me to see the series through to completion and now I can truly say I love Turn A Gundam in all honesty. I feel this is the best of Yoshiyuki Tomino’s works as he has crafted a unique story within the Gundam meta-verse with a great cast of characters who are truly well-written and developed, especially with the principal female cast. ∀ Gundam is the last cel-animated Gundam series before the era of digital animation. It’s truly sad such a beautiful series such as Turn A Gundam is not well-loved by Gundam fans, especially in its’ country of origin. It’s hard to believe it is so with so many talents that worked on the series; such as the renowned Yoko Kanno who composed the music for the series. ∀ Gundam is definitely among my Top 5 Favorite TV Gundam shows and would re-watch. It is a series I recommend to both fans of Gundam and mecha in general as ∀ Gundam is a series that is both entertaining and engaging to watch as it tells a great story that sets itself apart from the usual Gundam fare. What makes ∀ Gundam a unique title in the Gundam universe is the overall setting in which mankind on Earth have been rebuilding what was lost so long ago in the wake of what the Turn A’s destructive Moonlight Butterfly caused and the ironic twist of fate as the very thing that led to Earth’s destruction in the past, becomes something more hopeful in the hands of Loran Cehack who has become its’ pilot, unaware early on of the dreaded legacy that his “White Doll” has other than as a centerpiece for coming-of-age ceremonies for the people of the town in which he lives. Loran himself is a great Gundam protagonist because he has a positive attitude, hard-working, good-natured, selfless, and the experiences he has throughout the series helps him grow as a character. The series is also good at showing the horrors of war without having to wrack countless deaths as Tomino was known to do in his previous Gundam shows, a most noteworthy scene of great magnitude is the detonation of unearthed nuclear weapons that shocks each character on both sides of the heavy cost that their war against each other has wrought…and it leads to the death of a man Sochie Heim loved dearly. With the character of Harry Ord, you can find a brilliant Char-clone in him as he is written with such a unique approach than other Char-clones. The only points I didn’t particularly like about the series is the lack of development for characters such as Agrippa and Gym in their ambitions against Dianna and Gym’s faction of “soldiers” are left to be desired…he’s plenty powerful enough a character that doesn’t need any lackeys to cramp his style. Other than those two flaws, ∀ Gundam was a fine series overall.
April of this year will mark the 15th Anniversary of the Turn A Gundam series, so I send my happy anniversary greetings to the series and to all who have been involved with ∀ Gundam. I hope since Nozomi rescued Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn, hopefully they will rescue ∀ Gundam too someday. It will also be nice to see a BD release of the TV series be announced as well.
Below is the full first OP song of Turn A Gundam, “Turn A Turn”
Turn A Gundam OP #1-Turn A Turn (Hideki Saijou)
My Rating System
10.Masterpiece-Ultimate perfection, re-watch is a must because it was so terrific a series to watch that I can enjoy endlessly without it ever being a dull moment.
9.Great-Truly awesome and a definite re-watch, but just barely makes it to the level of masterpiece.
8.Very Good-A pleasant watching experience, some re-watch worthy, but has at least one or two flaws that prevented it from getting a higher score.
7.Good-A decent series, just a few flaws, yet was entertaining to see.
6.Fine-Could've been done much better, but wasn't too bad.
5.Average-Just meh, not bad but not great either.
4.Bad-Nothing really good to speak of because the flaws outweigh anything good about it.
3.Very Bad-Flawed and possesses no redeeming qualities.
2.Horrible-Too flawed and too horribly made, a complete waste of time.
1.Unwatchable-Things like a modern ecchi and lolicon anime is what I would consider unwatchable. Fanservice done to the extreme like that is disgusting. Also anime that makes me facepalm myself and say WTFPWP!
Top 25 Anime Shows I Dislike-Those With An Average Rating of 6 or Higher
Aki Sora (Both OVA's)-All this series has going for it is the pretty art, Sora was a lame ripoff of Pico of Boku no Pico although being a sis-con. I wish this was more of a yuri with Nami and Kana as the main couple...too much Aki/Sora scenes and not enough Nami/Kana.
Bouken! Iczer 3-Terrible sequel to the much better Iczer-1 OVA.
Chobits-The main characters weren't that great, especially Chii who had zero personality. Their romance wasn't that great either. Side characters like Shinbo and Takako were better characters and I feel they should've been the mains.
Code Geass-This series felt like a bad combination of Gundam SEED & LOGH. I am not a fan of this series and its' characters, plain and simple.
Devilman OVA's-These 3 aren't that good, they lack any real structure and underdeveloped the story. I found the Devilman Lady anime much better.
Dirty Pair OVA's-Just followed the same format as the TV series and really never developed Kei and Yuri's characters to a new level. Nolandia was the worst of them with a bad story and character animation. I was really never fond of the character animation of the OVA's and preferred the TV series character animation.
Evangelion Rebuild Movies-These are sad excuses for a reboot, they have nothing on the original series in terms of story and character development, also they take a number of the characters and twist them in an unflattering way that ruins them, such as Misato for example. After seeing 3 of the 4 films, all they did was disappoint me greatly. The only true Evangelion for me, is the original series and The End of Evangelion film finale...not this horrible reboot.
Girls und Panzer-Aside from a supporting character I did like not having enough screen-time and development, and this is one reason why I hate anime shows like these that don't develop its' adult characters. About half of the characters in this series were annoying and lame as shit that I could care less about as well. This series was a waste of my time and at times I wish Sentai didn't license series, there is better stuff than this.
Inuyasha-The worst of Rumiko Takahashi's works; Kagome was a terrible heroine, Shippo was a lame-ass sidekick, and Naraku was a shit antagonist. It could've been better if were a shorter series and if Sango was the main heroine.
Macross 7-This was overall a pretty weak series for me; I didn't like Nekki Basara and hearing him sing the same old songs got real old fast. The villains were also lame as shit. This series didn't need to be 49 episodes long, the standard 26 should've sufficed.
Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica-Quite a pretentious series that didn't do anything for me through most of the praise it gets, the title heroine Madoka was more of a crybaby than NGE's Shinji. She seemed like she was on the sideline through most of the series and was useless. I didn't find her an admirable heroine at all and I also don't find Homura that interesting either. Characters like Sayaka and Kyoko were better characters than the both of them and more interesting.
Magic Knight Rayearth OVA-Just one big facepalm, the TV anime was much better than this shit.
Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack-Quess and Gyunei killed the movie for me, Char and Amuro bringing up the past over Lalah didn't help either as that aspect of their rivalry felt rather wishy-washy.
Mobile Suit Gundam SEED/Destiny-The worst of the Gundam series IMHO that I've seen, all it had going for it was the gorgeous male/female characters and that's all that its' popularity can show for it. Flay was the worst thing going for the first series. I also find the series guilty of the over-use of plot armor and a lot of the characters and how they develop are poorly written; especially in Destiny, such as Kira and Athrun, they start to show too many bad flaws and the main female characters are bland and uninteresting. This is also too much of a teen soap melodrama than a war story.
Najica Blitz Tatics-Overall a weak story and the worst episodic format I've ever seen. Najica didn't impress me that much as a protagonist and Lila was another AI character with zero personality.
Ozma-Too predictable a storyline that seems rather outdated.
Rurouni Kenshin Seisouhen & Shin Kyoto Hen-The worst of the worst of DEEN's adaptations, sheesh can't they get it through their thick skulls that RK fans want a true anime adaptation of the Jinchuu arc, and not shit like these?!
Sailor Moon R & SuperS-Other than Chibi-Usa being a horrible character, the plotlines of each of these two seasons were not my cup of tea, especially that horrible SuperS season. The filler arc in R was also lame.
Sengoku Basara-What a horrible representation of great historical figures with no regard to accuracy and the over-the-top shounen antics. It's not good enough as a guilty pleasure.
Tamako Market-Lamest KyoAni anime ever, why did Sentai have to license this shit? At times I feel they make horrible choices when it comes to what they license.
Urusei Yatsura TV-That douche-bag Ataru Moroboshi killed any enjoyment I had, most of the time I wondered why Lum is in love with that loser.
X/1999 (Movie)-Total snores-ville and very dull, there was nothing about this movie that was interesting. I'm glad that it was re-made into a TV series years later, which is the better adaptation.
Top 25 Anime Characters I Dislike
Gavlet Gablae & Quwasan Olibee-Heavy Metal L-Gaim
Kozue Izumi and Michelle Cay-Infinite Ryvius
Kagome Higurashi, Shippo & Naraku-Inuyasha
Nekki Basara-Macross 7
Madoka Kaname-Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica
Suzu Sakuma & Jinny Golding-Marmalade Boy
Nina Purpleton-Mobile Suit Gundam 0083
Quess Paraya & Gyunei Guss-Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack
Flay Allster, Shinn Asuka, and Athrun Zala (in GSD)-Mobile Suit Gundam SEED/Destiny
Glemy Toto & Chara Soon-Mobile Suit ZZ Gundam
Kodachi Kuno & Genma Saotome-Ranma 1/2
Chibi Usa-Sailor Moon R/S/SuperS
Ataru Moroboshi-Urusei Yatsura
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