This has been one of the best times for anime and the sheer evolution of the industry over these 10 years is crazy to consider. Just looking back on the number of anime that came out in one season in 2010 compared to a season now shows an explosion of growth. And sure, there’s been plenty of sequels, reboots, and rehashes of old tropes. However, there also have been stand out hits that did something unique and were immediate loves of mine at first watch.
So for this list, I didn’t restrict myself to one per year, nor any limitation of trying to number one anime above another. Instead, I just wanted to share anime that had a big impact on me and, I think, also the industry. So given when this list is coming out, let’s celebrate the holidays in alphabetical order with something morbid: Death!
When I was constructing this list, I have to confess that I really had no idea for any kind of structure whatsoever. I just started pulling entries from my list of completed anime, and before I knew it, I had accidentally pulled shows that were all from different years of the decade. So, I figured, why not just keep up the trend until I have one from each year? While I tried my best to keep the list to just one show per year, there were a few instances where I had to bend that rule just a little bit. Thus, we have the list you are looking at now.
Since I constructed this as a list of shows from each year, it almost felt weird to rank them, and as such, I have opted not to do so. Instead of, say, a battle royale of sorts to determine which is the single best anime of the decade, which seems like a silly effort to try to tackle in the space of a post like this, I have instead opted to have this post function as a showcase of sorts to show that there are shows that I believe should absolutely be watched from every year this past decade.
Each show is going to be on this list for different reasons, and none of these entries are perfect (honestly, what show is?). However, I do believe wholeheartedly that each entry deserves to be on this list and should be watched for different reasons. I’m going to try to be as detailed as I can for my picks with each entry here, but for the sake of space on this thing, each entry is confined to just a few paragraphs. A few entries have redirects to other articles done for The Backloggers, so you can follow those for some additional details, if you wish.
I think that’s all we really need to say at this point, so let’s get a move-on!
All right, so Madoka was a serious and depressing topic last time, so I thought I’d go with a pick-me-up for this next discussion. So! Let’s talk about my favorite hilarious troll moves I’ve seen from anime. Now these are just my five favorite trolls that I wanted to point out, and I’m limited by what I’ve seen, so I won’t make this a list of “The Top Five of All Anime” or anything that conceited. Also, another limitation on this list is that I’m only including what I consider as funny trolling in anime, i.e. playing a joke on the audience for a bit of fun, rather than for a sudden plot twist in the story that changes everything, or a scene that is a big middle finger to the fans such as Sword Art Online S1 and its main antagonist’s final spiel. (Also, I’m looking at you, OreImo. The lesson here is if you wanna write a story, but your publisher doesn’t want it written the way you want, get a new publisher.) As such, I’m also excluding any major plot twists from anime that greatly influence the story, such as Madoka: The Rebellion Story or other twist endings that change everything in general. These are all great, but they deserve their own discussion since the anime industry really loves to take a left turn towards the end of their series, whether they need to or not. Since this isn’t including any major plot twists that dramatically change a series, this discussion will actually be relatively major spoiler free, but we will be going over material that’s in the middle to end of some anime so SPOILER ALERT if you care about minor spoilers for a series. Now, let’s get this crazy hootenanny, shindig started!