Thursday, January 11, 2018

Rose Red's Beginner's Guide to Anime, Part One

This past year I've gotten back into watching anime thanks to a certain really popular figure skating anime and it feels like I've found myself again. I've loved anime since my Best Friend first introduced me to Sailor Moon and Death Note in high school but it was hard and expensive to get a hold of. We were limited by what we could get our hands on physically which was usually only the popular shows that would make it in the American markets, Studio Ghibli films, and fansubs that were uploaded to the internet not so legally.

Now, there is just so much anime we can stream across multiple platforms that it can be hard to choose what to watch first. Today, I want to put my two cents in and recommend the series I think work best for those who want to get into anime but don't know where to start. I'm going do this post in three installments because it would be super long otherwise. This post and the next one will each feature four of my favorite TV animes that are great for newbies and veterans alike. The last one will be all about anime movies. After Part Three comes out, I'm planning on doing periodic anime rec and review posts throughout the rest of the year as I find new stuff and rewatch old favorites. So be on the lookout for that. Let's get started, shall we?

A Note On Anime Streaming: You don't need a subscription to watch most of these animes. As long as you don't mind watching ads, you can stream this whole list on Crunchyroll or Funimation for FREE.

Yuri!!! on Ice
Episodes: 12
It wouldn't be a post-2016 anime post without mentioning the brilliance of Yuri on Ice, would it? It is one of the most awesome animes I've seen in a long time and it's THE show that got several of my friends in anime. I can't even tell you how many times I rewatched it in 2017. It's easily my favorite anime of all time. It's a sports anime that doesn't shy away from heavier topics like anxiety and depression. The fact that it also has great music, a large and diverse cast of characters, gorgeous animation, and a wonderful queer romance is just icing on the cake. This anime is great on so many levels that I could devote a whole post to it. It currently has only twelve episodes so it's easy to binge watch in a day or over the weekend. 

Can Be Watched On: 

My Hero Academia
Episodes: 38 + 2 OVAs

My Hero Academia is the anime that I never knew I needed in my life until I watched it this last year. It's about a superhero high school and the main character Izuku Midoriya's struggle to gain control of his quirk aka superpower. Midoriya is the type of underdog you can't help but fall in love with and root for. Actually, I fell in love with most of the characters. It quickly turned into one of my favorite animes of all time. Depending on the day you ask me, it could beat out Yuri!!! on Ice as my favorite. It has a large diverse cast and is full of action and humor. I can't begin to tell you how much I loved this one. It's the perfect blend of Western superheroes and Eastern culture plus it has a lot of superhero-type action scenes. It's just so much fun! We're getting Season 3 this spring and I'm so excited for it!

Can Be Watched On: 

Snow White with the Red Hair
Episodes: 24 + an OVA
I've watched a lot of romance anime during my tenure as an anime enthusiast so I can say without a doubt that Snow White with the Red Hair is one of the best romance animes I've ever seen! Contrary to what its name implies, this anime really has nothing to do with the Snow White story. If you are in search of a sweet and heart-warming romantic tale, then look no more. The romance between Shirayuki and Zen is absolutely adorable and perfect! There is no unnecessary bickering or drama, plus the flow of the story and their relationship is smooth and relaxing. This is an anime that can teach other animes how to handle romance and relationship development. The entire cast is absolutely fantastic! Each character had the perfect amount of depth to their development that only adds to the narrrative. The romance between Shirayuki and Zen is just so freaking perfect! I ship them so hard! The whole anime (and manga!) is all about them falling in love and supporting each other and growing into themselves. I can't recommend this one enough. I have my fingers crossed that we'll get at least one more season.

Can Be Watched On: 

Yona of the Dawn
Episodes: 24 + 3 OVAs

Okay. I'm going to admit now that I have a soft spot for reverse harem animes and Yona of the Dawn is hands down my all-time favorite out of the ones I've watched. It's the story of a spoiled princess who flees after witnessing her father's murder and after traveling through her country is determined to get her throne back so she can help the people. It's an amazing fantasy adventure anime with a bit of romance thrown in! It starts out a bit slow but by episode four I was in for the long haul. It’s just SO good. The story is intriguing but the characters are what makes this anime so great. I adore all seven of them! And I ship the romance so hard! It's not the main focus of the anime but it's so good despite that. The character development in Yona alone from the beginning to end makes it worth the watch but the other characters have just as great arcs. *hugs Shin-Ah hard* I still have my fingers crossed that we'll get another season or two but I'm not sure if that's ever going to happen. Thank God! We have the manga and it's 26 volumes of gloriousness.

Can Be Watched On:

That's Part One of my Beginner's Guide to Anime. Part Two will be out next week! In the meantime, what anime would you recommend to a newbie?

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