(Boku dake ga inai machi)
How far would you be willing to go to save an innocent life? Satoru Fujinuma, a 29 year old manga writer, has a secret power that lets him go back in time for a few minutes, just long enough to head off whatever disaster is about to happen, until finally disaster visits he, himself. Accused of a crime he didn't commit, he's transported back not a few minutes, but 18 years into the past, where as an eleven year old middle school student he pays an almost unthinkable price to thwart a serial killer and save those closest to him. Boku dake ga inai machi is a roller coaster of emotion. We enjoyed the ride and gave Erased 5 out of 5.
Boku dake ga inai machi is based on the manga of the same name by Kei Sanbe and is licensed in english by Yen Press . An anime adaptation by A-1 Pictures was aired in January of 2016, and a live action film was released in March of 2016. A netflix tv show adaptation was aired December of 2017. It is currently available for purchase in DVD and Blu Ray format with a variety of subtitles based on your language preference.
Attack on Titan (Shingeki no Kyojin)
In the future, giant naked humanoid beings, known as Titans will control earth. Mankind will be forced into one last surviving city, surrounded by 3 great walls. The walls are what has kept humans safe from the Titans, who eat humans, for the last 100 years. Mankind will be safe as long as they remain within their walls, or so they thought. The Colossal Titan, the largest Titan humans have seen, shatters that myth along with the outer wall, wall Maria, creating an opening for the other Titans to attack and pillage the districts nearest the breach. Eren, Mikasa and Armin were there when it happened and the story begins.
Attack on Titan is based on the popular manga written by Hajime Isayama. It was produced by Wit Studio and Production I.G. It currently has aired 3 seasons, the first in 2013 and the second in 2017,the third aired 2018 with the final season coming in April 2019. The anime grew in popularity thanks to the success of the manga. It also has led to the creation of a two part live action movie. The anime, both seasons, and the movie both parts are available on DVD and Blu Ray with a variety of subtitles available. It contains action, horror/gore, drama and supernatural elements. Unfortunately, we saw the anime before we ever read the manga. The manga goes into much more depth and answers many questions the anime hasn't yet. We still love it just the same, keeping it on our top 10 anime list. We gave it a much deserved 5 out of 5, and like many fans, are eagerly awaiting the third season.
Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo!
Kazuma Satou enjoys living his NEET (shut-in) life. He spends his time in his room playing video games for days. One day, venturing outside to get the latest video game, Kazuma dies, trying to save a girl from being run over by a truck. Turns out, what he thought was a truck was really a tractor. In the afterlife he meets Aqua, a conceited and not very bright goddess. The goddess ridicules Kazuma for the way he died trying to save a girl who was never in any danger. Laughing hysterically, she tells Kazuma that he wet his pants when he fell in front of the tractor. She then reveals that his cause of death was shock due to the weakening of his heart by staying awake for days playing video games, but offers to let him start over in a new world. She even offers to let him have a magical power or weapon to take with him in this new world. Aqua tells Kazuma he can even return to his former life, all he has to do is defeat the Devil King, who has been ruling over this new world with an iron fist causing problems for the inhabitants. Frustrated and angry at the way he died and how Aqua has been treating him like he is an idiot, he decides the magical weapon he wants in this new world is Aqua! The gods agree to the terms and send both Aqua and Kazuma to this new world. Kazuma is elated while Aqua is begging and pleading with the gods not to send her with him to this new world. Kazuma finds out very quickly, that this new life he has been granted, with a goddess at his side, is going to more difficult than his old life ever was. Even with the aid of his newest adventuring companions Megumin and Lalatina Dustiness Ford (Darkness).
Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! (God's blessing on this wonderful world) or Konosuba for short, is based off of the light novel series written by Natsume Akatsuki was published by Kadokawa Shoten's Kadokawa Sneaker Bunko Imprint from October 2013. The manga illustrated by Masahito Watari, began serialization in Fujimi Shobo's Monthly Dragon Age magazine from October 2014. The anime adaptation by Studio Deen aired in 2016. It has 2 hilarious seasons, and an anime movie slated for 2019 release. Konosuba is available for purchase on DVD and Blu Ray formats in a variety of languages. It is a hilarious anime with a great cast of characters. We thoroughly enjoyed Konosuba and it is one of our top 10 anime, giving it 5 out 5.
Looking for a funny anime that has a plot that is loose enough that you don't have to watch every episode, so you don't miss something? Well, Aho Girl is the anime you've been looking for. It follows the two main characters, Yoshiko Hanabatake and her neighbor, Akuru "A-kun"Akutsu. Yoshiko is obsessed with Akuru, much to his disdain. Yoshiko is cute, but tragically quite stupid (that's putting it mildly), and enamored with Akuru. Her mother, Yoshie, is always looking for ways to help Yoshiko get the man of her dreams, Akuru. Mostly because she realizes that if she doesn't get Yoshiko married off to someone, she will be stuck with her idiocy forever. The comedy in Aho Girl is light and fast. It is very similar to many typical "guy falls for girl" anime, where the guy is a bit of a pervert and stupid, except they take it to a whole new level, breaking all the stereotypes. The comedy isn't as ecchi as "High School DxD" and not as light as "Daily lives of high school boys". We found every episode funny with many side splitting moments (That's not an exaggeration). It isn't your typical slice of life/comedy anime. It is loaded with laughs and will have your sides aching. Our only regret was not coming across this anime sooner. We gave Aho Girl 5 out of 5, and is in our top 5 of comedy anime.
Aho Girl was produced by Diomedea, formally Studio Barcelona and originally aired in Summer of 2017. It only has one season (12 episodes) and is currently available for purchase in DVD and Blu Ray formats. The manga is currently entering its second season, so it is reasonable to assume, considering the success of season one, that a second season of the anime will follow. We will update the release date when it is announced by the studio.
Kōtetsujō no Kabaneri
(Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress)
Part zombie part steampunk, Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress has the best of both. Ikoma is an informal scientist/inventor/steam mechanic in a world that has long since been overrun with zombies. Mumei is a mysterious girl with a dark secret she will share with her new found friend, Ikoma. Mankind is penned in several walled cities along Japan's rail line. Each city depends on each other for essential supplies that arrive by heavily armored steam engine trains. The zombies of this world are not your typical run-of-the-mill clumsy, slow and stupid zombies. They are the Kabane, zombies with an metal cage around their hearts, and a knack for learning and a taste for human blood. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress is original, despite the zombies, and contains horror, action and drama. We loved the animation and the story, along with the steampunk element. Not to mention the same studio that gave us Attack on Titan, Owari No Seraph and Mahoutsukai no Yome. We gave it 5 out 5, and you will too!
Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress was produced by Wit Studio (Attack on Titan) in 2016. The series was directed by Tetsurō Araki and written by Ichirō Ōkouchi, with music by Hiroyuki Sawano (so you know the soundtrack is epic) and original character designs by Haruhiko Mikimoto. It has 12 action packed episodes, 3 prologue movies and a mobile game released fall of 2018 with a movie at the same time. There have been rumors that the largely successful studio is going to unleash a 2nd season Winter 2020 or Spring 2020. It is also available for purchase on DVD and Blu-Ray in a variety of languages.
Set in a dystopian future in Japan, where science has discovered the secret of souls. Law enforcement is part of the Ministry of Welfare and Public Safety Bureau. Society has entrusted judgement with the supercomputer, Sibyl. It has everything we enjoy in an anime: Action, Drama, Comedy and Science Fiction. The story follows new inspector Akane Tsunemori and the Enforcers (latent criminals used to hunt other criminals), through a series of crimes being investigated by the MWPSB. Enforcement of Sibyl's judgement is carried out through the weapon inspectors and enforcers carry, the dominator. The name says it all. Sibyl is able to scan suspects and provide judgement with varying degrees of power.
We thouroughly enjoyed Psycho-Pass. It will always be in our Top 10 of anime. We rate this 5 out of 5.
Psycho-Pass originally aired in 2012-2013 and was produced by Production I.G. (B: The Beginning). It has 2 seasons and an anime movie. Psycho Pass is being rejuvenated early 2019 with 3 prequel movies being released under the name Psycho Pass SS (Sinners of the System). It will cover stories of how Kogami, Tomomi and Risa (from Season 2) come to work for the MWPSB. It is currently available for purchase online and is available with English/Japanese spoken languages and a variety of subtitles (depending on country of origin).
Update: Production I.G. has announced a third season of Psycho Pass to start winter season 2020 as well as the 3 prequel movies released in January and February of 2019.
Created in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the manga Ashita no Joe , Megalo Box brings together everything we love about anime. Gritty action, the underdog overcoming all odds, and light comedy all combines together in this anime. Megalo Box is produced by TMS Entertainment Studios, who also produced the original Ashita no Joe in 1980 along with D. Gray-Man and ReLife. This updated story has more grit and and an animation style that reminds us of Akira and Cowboy Bebop. Megalo Box also boasts a fresh soundtrack composed by hip-hop artist Mabanua. Boxers in the future use mechanical frames that increase their speed and power called Gear. Junk Dog is a lowly underground fighter that is paid to throw fights by the seedy underbelly of the slums the non-citizens live in. Then there is Yukiko Shirato, who owns the professional boxing league (for citizens only) and decides to open a tournament for all citizens called Megalonia. The Shirato group not only creates the best Gear available for boxers, they also own the best Megalo boxer, Yuri. Junk Dog has a near miss with Yukiko on his motorcycle after losing a fight, he mouths off to her boxer, and bodyguard Yuri, that is always at her side. The next fight Junk Dog has is changed by Yuri, who replaces his Junk Dog's opponent only to lay a beat down on JD. After which Junk Dog sets his sights on Yuri and the Megalonia tournament.
Megalo Box aired in 2018 (spring) and had 13 episodes. It was our top pick for the spring season. DVD and Blu Ray copies are not yet available but we will update the page when they are. There are no plans for a second season. With all its grit and action we gave Megalo Box 5 out of 5, and feel it is the runaway hit of 2018.
IS: Ifinite Stratos
This is our favorite harem anime. Created by 8bit studio, the creators of Grisaia no Kajitsu and the fall season hit of 2018, Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken. Infinite Stratos is a mecha anime about a 15 year old boy named Ichika Orimura. In his world there are exoskeleton weapons developed in Japan and can only be piloted by females, or so they thought. The production of exoskeletons is limited so there is fierce rivalry and competition by other nations to develop their own pilots and exoskeletons. One fateful day Ichika, while searching the school for the exam room, accidentally activates one of the exoskeletons. Word spreads quickly across Japan and Ichika is enrolled, by the Japan's government, in the famed IS Academy, the training grounds for exoskeleton (IS for short) pilots worldwide and also a female only school. He soon discovers his older sister, and famed IS pilot, is now his instructor and his childhood friend, Houki Shinonono, is part of his new class. Being the only boy in the school, Ichika rises in popularity quickly and before too long Houki has many rivals for Ichika's attention. The list of admirers grows very quickly, with new ones appearing every other episode. While enrolled at IS, he becomes a formidable IS pilot and the target of other nation's spies and assassins who seek to duplicate his ability to pilot an IS despite being male. We enjoyed the situations he finds himself in, what guy wouldn't? To be the most popular student at IS academy and the target of all the females love and affection. The plot tends to slow at points but the different girls of his growing harem make up for it. Most being tsunderers at the start, and a yandere who wants HIM to be HER bride!
Infinite Stratos originally aired between January and April of 2011 and has 2 complete seasons and an OVA. 8bit studio is still producing favorably received titles and remains successful. Infinite Stratos Season 1 and 2 are available to purchase in a variety of language choices in DVD or Blu Ray formats. This is one of our top harem anime choices and we gave it 5 out of 5.
Gangsta is one of the grittiest and under appreciated anime we have seen to date. Based off the manga that was illustrated and created by Kohske, the anime aired in 2015. It has inspired many spinoffs, anime, manga, audio series and even an novel. It was produced by the now bankrupt Manglobe studios. Unfortunately, it is an unfinished anime due to the studio going under and the creator's poor health.
Gangsta follows the lives of two "handymen", mercenaries, that work for a mafia family in Ergastulum. First, there is Worick Arcangelo, a gigolo and has been since the age of 13. Coming from a prominent crime family himself, Worick has been raised within the crime syndicate and has endured abuse from his father, while he was a child. This event has molded him into the man his today. At one point, his father puts a lit cigarette out on his eye causing him to have to wear an eye patch for the rest of his life. Worick also suffers from hyperthymesia, which causes him to remember events in his life in vivid detail, similar to a photographic memory. Being from a powerful family, Worick as a child, was assigned a personal body guard similar in age, Nicolas Brown, who possesses inhuman fighting skills thanks to his addiction to the drug Celebrer. Celebrer is a drug used by mercenaries which give the user inhuman fighting abilities. As with all drugs, the more they use, the higher the risk of dependency and the horrible side effects such as coma and brain death. Nicolas is known as a "twilight", a name given to mercenaries that have become Celebrer users, recognized by their dogtags. Nicolas is also deaf, which makes his fighting abilities stand out even more so. Nicolas and Worick have been together for over 20 years which has created a brotherly bond between them.
This story has a lot of violence, sex, drugs and crime, with the two main characters being the epitome of anti-heroes. The manga ran from 2011-2018 so there is plenty of material for more seasons. The animation, itself is very well done and the subject matter provides a grittyness and raw subject material (crime, drug addiction etc.) that most anime pale in comparison. Whether it is the bond between Nicolas and Worick or the story of two criminals with a heart of gold, each episode will hold your attention. Our only complaints are the abruptness of the end of the anime season and the lack of hype used to promote it, with many anime watchers never having heard of it. We have watched it over and over again, always finding another reason why we enjoy the story. It is available on DVD and Blu-Ray but there are no known plans for a second season.