2012 Year in Review: TV Anime

The final entry in my 2012 Year in Review. Previously we discussed music and characters. This time, I’ve gone ahead and ranked all the anime of 2012 from worst to best (loosely). This list only includes shows that have finished.

Dropped: Acchi KocchiArashi no Yoru ni: Himitsu no TomodachiBrave 10, Busou ShinkiCode BreakerEbitenFolktales from Japan, Gon, Hiiro no Kakera, Kuroko’s BasketballKuromajyo-san ga Touru!!, La storia della Arcana FamigliaGakkatsuKamisama HajimemashitaKill Me BabyThe Knight in the AreaLitchi DE Hikari ClubNaruto SDPabu and MochizuRecorder to Randsell,  Saint Seiya OmegaShibainuko-sanSukitte li na YoTeekyuToLoveRu Darkness, Zetman

Incomplete: AKB0048ChihayafuruDusk Maiden of AmnesiaMysterious Girlfriend XNatsuiro KisekiNatsuyuki RendezevousSankareaShakugan no Shana IIIUtakoi

Ongoing Series: GIRLS und PANZER, Hunter X HunterIxion Saga DTJojo’s Bizarre Adventure, Little BustersMagi, Polar Bear Cafe, PSYCHO PASSRobotics; NotesSakurasou no Pet na Kanojo, Shin Sekai YoriSpace BrosZetsuen no Tempest

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59. Medaka Box and Medaka Box Abnormal — F
Took a good manga and made it unbelievably awful.

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58. Shining Hearts: The Bread of Happiness — F
A coma in animated form.

57. Papa no Iukoto wo Kikinasai! — F
An upstanding young man invites his female cousins to live with him. Sexy times ensue.

56. Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate — F
This is what I hate about anime.

55. Black Rock Shooter — F
Insane middle school girls transform into rainbow ninjas and throw temper tantrums.

54. Accel World — F
Like Sword Art Online but less intelligent.

53. Hagure Yuusha no Estetica — F
Most disgusting thing that aired this year.

52. Dakara Boku wa H ga Dekinai — F
So fugly. And dumb in a boring way.

51. Sword Art Online — F
Kirito stuck his massive sword into a lot of young, virgin flesh.

50. Queen’s Blade: Rebellion — F
Way better than I thought it would be.

49. Guilty Crown — F
Was entertaining in a “how can this be so stupid” way.

48. Dog Days 2 — D-
Eclair… and an entire season of utter boredom.

47. Binbougami Ga!! — D-
Ga! Not funny.

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46. Saki Achiga-hen Episode of Side A — D-
Great characters… except for the main ones, who were completely forgettable.

45. Campione! — D-
Mythological BS and lots of humping.

44. Amagami SS+ — D
This show did not need a sequel.

43. Nisemonogatari — D
Highly sexualized prepubescent girls, imoutos and head tilts.

42. Tari Tari — D+
I occasionally emerged from my slumber to rage against Wakana.

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41. Hayate no Gotoku: Can’t Take my Eyes Off You — D+
A crime against humanity.

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40. Onii-chan Dakedo Ai Sae Areba Kankeinai yo ne — D+
An incest show in which Imouto was one of the better characters… what?

39. Zero no Tsukaima Final — D+
You probably know what to expect by this point.

38. Kore wa Zombie Desu Ka?!! Of the Dead — D+
Yawwwwnnnn. Why did they bother making this?

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37. Joshiraku — D+
Cute girls slug each other in the face. (The rest is boring though.)

36. Muv Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse — D+
An apocalyptic battle against alien invaders… that our heros spend running around in swimsuits and flirting with each other.

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35. BTOOOM!! — D+
RAPE RAPE RAPE BOOM

34. Another — C-
Fine, I admit it, I only watched this for Izumi.

33.  Kono Naka ni Hitori Imouto ga Iru — C
WHO IS IMOUTO?!!!!

32. Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita — C
Haha the world is going to end and no one cares, I’m so witty!

31. Moretsu Pirates — C
Pirates! That sit around chatting and drinking tea…. Lame.

30. Upotte! — C
Girls are guns.

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29. K — C
Looks pretty, but I’m not entirely sure what happened.

28. Moyashimon Returns — C
Not up to snuff with the first season, but still mildly entertaining.

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27. Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun — C+
I’m not a fan of shoujo romances, but this was pretty good as far as they go.

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26. Rinne no Lagrange — C+
Lesbians save the world with giant robots. Too happy. Needs to learn from Tomino.

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25. Lupin the Third: Mine Fujiko — C+
Well made, just not particularly engaging…

24. Inu x Boku SS — C+
Great costumes and Karuta is the cutest thing ever, but pointless.

23. Oda Nobuna no Yabou — C+
Dumb premise but pretty solid despite it.

22. Yuruyuri ♪♪ — C+
Most depressing show of the year. Had some amazing episodes (like the time travel one) but most were pretty mediocre.

21. High School DxD — B-
Totally perverted, totally shameless, and accepts itself for what it is.

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20. Jormungand S2 and Jormungand S1 — B-
A psychotic lesbian’s army blows stuff up.

19. Mobile Suit Gundam AGE — B-
Went downhill right around the time Kio was born.

18. Thermae Romae — B
Half naked Romans time travel to Japanese baths.

17. Persona 4 — B
Made a videogame succeed by turning the main character into a badass.

16. Last Exile: Fam, the Silver Wing — B
Awesome setting, but didn’t really know what to do with it.

15. Ano Natsu de Matteru — B
Pretty harmless love story. With aliens.

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14. Fate / Zero — B
The adventures of Rider and Waver. Gets way better once Lancer dies.

13. Aquarion EVOL — B
Let’s dig some holes.

12. Senki Zesshou Symphogear — B
Listen to my sooooonnnnngggg!!!!

11. Mirai Nikki — B
A cute girl is an axe-wielding maniac.

10. Haiyore! Nyaruko-san — B+
This shouldn’t have been nearly as funny as it was.

9. Kokoro Connect — Review Incomplete
I’m not sure why I like this show so much.

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8. Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai! — B+
A hilarious story of what it means to grow up.

7. Tsuritama — B+
Enoshima don!

6. Daily Lives of High School Boys — B+
For once a high school show that’s realistic— full of kids making fools of themselves.

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5. Sengoku Collection — B+
Some episodes can only be described as beautiful works of art.

4. Eureka Seven Ao — A-
Yeah, I know it has issues, but this kind of sci-fi / fantasy adventure is what made me start watching anime in the first place.

3. Sakamichi no Apollon — A-
Historical drama, with great characters and a bittersweet ending.

2. Tantei Opera Milky Holmes 2 — A-
Hahahaha, best thing ever.

1. Hyouka — A-
Much stronger in the second half, but Mayaka, the romance and the culture festival arc made this the best series of the year for me.

Which shows did you think were the best and worst of 2012?

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  1. FINALLY a blogger I follow put Hyouka in the place it deserves!
    Haven’t seen Milky Holmes, E7Ao, Sengoku Collection, or Daily Lives of HSB, but I probably will someday…
    I agree with you on Kokorokokoro, I don’t understand why I liked it either. Especially when the love triangle happened. That was the worst part ever. Though the ending was better than I expected :P

  2. I would have ranked Fate/Zero higher, though that has a lot to do with the fact that I’ve watched less than a quarter of the shows on this list. When I re-watched it while sharing the show with my brother, I realized that there sure is a whole lot of people just standing around and talking; I don’t think Saber and Lancer bothered me as much since I picked up the show after it had finished and watched it over the course of a single week, so their speeches about chivalry were just roadbumps rather than breaks in weekly action. But like you said in your review, the fights and music are both superb (I think I’ve watched most of the battles over ten times now when I’ve been killing time on my PC) and just about all the characters were really well done. It’s a shame that this was my introduction to the franchise; the production values here pretty much killed my chances of appreciating Stay/night when I tried to watch it.

    I really enjoyed Kokoro Connect for the first couple arcs, though my interest started to peter out after they stopped switching bodies. Never finished the final arc, is it worth going back to complete?

    Glad to see that Fam wasn’t universally hated, though considering that the original is one of my favorite anime of all time it really couldn’t compare as far as characters and story went. My brother summed it up best when he called Fam a “female Naruto”; I never liked her at all and most of her friends weren’t all that compelling either. Luscinia and his Federation buddies were fun to watch though, even if his master plan was pretty uninspired. The fact that he basically got exactly what he wanted confused me, though since he was my favorite character I didn’t mind all that much. And seeing Tatiana again was cool.

    Dropped AGE two episodes into Kio’s arc and can’t really find it in me to pick it up again.Daily Lives was fantastic, though I still need to watch the last two episodes. After all the good things I’ve seen about Hyouka on this blog I’ve finally started watching it. I’m enjoying it for the same reason I enjoyed Daily Lives: it’s about kids turning ordinary stuff into awesome dramas. And that’s pretty much all the anime I watched this year (outside of Kingdom, which wasn’t reviewed). Still love the reviews here, even if I don’t watch any of the shows. Keep it up.

    • Saber and Lancer bothered me more since I watched it while it was airing. If I hadn’t I would have just skipped over those parts and it would have been no big deal. It is beautiful though.

      I haven’t finished the final arc either so I can’t answer that. :/ Have to get around to writing a post on it…

      Fam wasn’t as good as the first, but I still enjoyed the show. Luscinia’s plan was dumb, but eh, whatever. The yuri antics made up for it.

      You chose the right time to drop AGE. Glad you like Hyouka! And I totally forgot about Kingdom… I watched the first episode and it just didn’t pique my interest. I’ve heard good things about it though.

  3. While I can at least sort of agree on most of your choices, but Binbougami at number 47! BOOOOOO BOOOOOO! And Acchi Kocchi was dropped, well more BOOOO for that.

    Other than that though, it is a pretty solid list. I didn’t like what I saw of Kokoro, Kids on the Slope or Nyaruku or E7Ao as much as you did, but I can agree on pretty much everything else.

    • Just didn’t find Binbougami all that funny. Not my kind of humor. (I mean, it was basically potty humor)

      Only watched the first episode of Acchi Kocchi, but I found it pretty boring.

  4. I totally agree w/ your #1!

    Apart from that the average ranking of my top 10 favorites in your list (except the series not ranked) would be 27 – surprisingly low! Perhaps b/c I like series w/ good visuals even if the plot is dumb or nonexistent (e.g. Lupin III and Nisemonogatari)?

    Your list also reminds me to put some series on my “plan to watch”-list which I missed during 2012: Tsuritama, Sengoku Collection, Nichbros and Eureka 7.

    Then again, you also left aside some series which were pretty good imo, in particular Utakoi. This ended up as one of my favorites. Cheap production values but awesome visuals nonetheless (thanks to the Japanese color schemes) and a very dreamlike, melancholic atmosphere. Also, Chihayafuru isn’t in my top 10 list but I think it is a must-see b/c it is perfect for what it is. I think it’s the only sports anime I could enjoy. I’d also like to mention Tasogare Otome which starts quite annoying but – thanks to the heroine’s cheerful and innocent personality and sad backstory – developed impressively!

    • Yeah, I don’t care too much for the visuals, so Lupin III and Nisemonogatari weren’t ranked very highly. Tsuritama and Sengoku Collection are two of the most beautiful series this year, so I think you’ll like them. Plus Sengoku Collection has cute girls in tons of awesome costumes. You don’t have to watch every episode though, see my review for the ones you can skip. Nichibros is hilarious, it may or may not be your thing though, check out the first episode and you’ll know. Eureka 7 AO has some excellent shipping in my opinion.

      I liked Utakoi but haven’t had a chance to finish it. I’ll get around to it eventually… Same with Tsaogare Otome. I’m not sure if I’ll ever manage to finish Chihayafuru though— it is perfect for what it is, but what it is is something I’m not particularly fond of.