December 29, 2010

My all time favorite anime series

Wonderduck just posted about his four all-time favorite series: four three two one.

It got me to thinking: do I have any all-time favorites? Thing is, there are a lot of series I've watched that I really loved, and that I've rewatched a lot of times. But eventually they go on the shelf and never get watched again. I've probably watched Shingu ten times, but it's been at least a year since the last time and I probably won't ever watch it again. Same for Petite Princess Yucie and Divergence Eve and Vandread.

There's one, and only one, series that I keep rewatching and never ever get tired of: Dragon Ball Z, and its new incarnation, Dragon Ball Kai. I first watched it something like fifteen years ago. But when the DVDs were coming out, I'd eagerly look forward to and buy each as they appeared. And I look forward each week now for the latest DBK episode. (The voice actor who originally did Mr. Satan committed suicide last spring, and I'd wondered who they were going to get to replace him. They chose this guy, most famously known as Jet Black in Cowboy Bebop, and he's doing a fantastic job.)

I'm not really sure why it is that Toriyama's masterpiece has aged so well with me, and why I keep revisiting it. I think it's a combination of things. First is the fact that the heroes are very believeable to me as people. They make stupid mistakes. They have serious character flaws. But they're neat people, deep down, and they'd make good friends.

I like the idea that the Saiyajin race was a bunch of blackguards, and that Goku is entirely different from his father and his people. I like Vegita a hell of a lot. His ego is his worst enemy. I like Krillin, the best best-friend a man could have. I like Piccolo; he's awesome.

I like the setting, the world. It's a lot different metaphysics than our world, and it's fascinating. And the gods there are also flawed, and that's refreshing.

Most of all, I like the powers and abilities everyone has. Flying, tossing energy blasts, Krillin's Kienzan, Tien's Solar Flare; it's just wonderful stuff.

I never get tired of it. I always say that Tezuka, Takahashi, and Toriyama are the gods of manga and anime. How many classic series did Tezuka do? How many came from Takahashi?

Toriyama only did the one, yet it stand so tall in the anime pantheon as to overshadow any other single show ever made by anyone, in terms of popularity and influence, and that's why Toriyama justly belongs with Tezuka and Takahashi.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in General Anime at 10:51 AM | Comments (6) | Add Comment
Post contains 449 words, total size 3 kb.

1 Although he never approached the number of franchises as Tezuka or Takahashi, Toriyama earlier did Dr. Slump, which in some ways had more of an impact on the manga industry than Dragonball, credited with originating the pastiche-type approach to genres that characterized so much innovation in the 80s and 90s..  

Posted by: skchai at December 29, 2010 12:30 PM (g3v5+)

2 I remember seeing some Dr. Slump at the Philadelphia Animation Society back in the mid '80's.  My first exposure to talking poo....

(We had no subtitles or scripts back then, we pretty much guessed that it was asking not to be stepped on.)

It's hard to say if I have a favorite.  I tend not to re-watch anything, having seen it already, it's too familiar.  In a way, I tend to buy DVD's of things I've seen as a way of acknowledging that I thought it was good.  I have shelves of unwatched DVDs, and I feel kinda stupid about it.

Posted by: Mauser at December 29, 2010 01:40 PM (cZPoz)

3 "Most of all, I like the powers and abilities everyone has. Flying, tossing energy blasts."  In that case, you might want to consider watching the rest of Samurai Girls, as there was a fair bit of that in the last episode to go with the swordplay. 

Of course, the ending left it open for a sequel.

Posted by: ubu at December 29, 2010 11:16 PM (GfCSm)

4 If I'm gonna watch Samurai Girls, I'm gonna wait for the uncensored version. There must be pleasure to offset the pain.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at December 29, 2010 11:39 PM (+rSRq)

5 I can't argue against that!  Nor, really, can I disagree with Aroduc's assessment and the comments there.  Seriously wasted potential, although Jyubei's end surprised me.  

Posted by: ubu at December 29, 2010 11:53 PM (GfCSm)

6 The world would have been a very different place if there hadn't been any Dragon Ball at all.

Posted by: Jaked at December 30, 2010 02:57 AM (501kt)

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