The top 10 Anime series for adults.
Anime? You mean like Pokémon and tentacle porn?!
When most people hear the word "anime" they to think one of three things: happy kids cartoons from Japan (like Pokémon, Digimon, Dragonball Z), perverted animated porn from Japan (e.g. Hentai, Ecchi, tentacle rape), or Hayao Miyazaki and his films from magical Japan. While these are anime, it makes up a small fraction of it.
In reality, anime is a varied as you can get. You can find anime on a whole host of genres such as sci-fi, romance, space westerns, comedy, slice of life, drama, criminal procedure, adult, action, experimental, and on, and on. To add to that, some of these programs have character development, plot structure, music, scores, and production values that rival most T.V. shows and live-action films.
This lens is made to introduce you to what you've been missing and to show how anime is legitimate art form like that of film and literature.
10. Photojournalism in a war zone
In the small Central Asian country of Uddiyana, a civil war between rebels and the government ravages the country. The U.N then decides to intervene to end the violence and for a time peace seem close. Saeko Shirasu takes a picture, a picture of a makeshift UN flag waving in the air. Little did she know that this very picture and this flag would become the symbol of an immanent peace. But when insurgents wishing to continue the fight steal the flag, Shirasu is asked to document the team assigned to retrieve the very flag she helped create as a symbol for peace.
From the story, to the theme, to how the series is told, FLAG is a very mature series.
FLAG mainly deals with the power of pictures. How they capture a moment in the human story and in this case, act as a symbol. Not to be outdone, the story is literally told through the eye of the camera, which gives it a very documentary feel.
It also takes an honest approach when analyzing the what a soldier is forced to do in war.
The story, while taken place in a region similar to that of Nepal, Tibet, Bhutan, is eerily analogous to the current situation in Afghanistan. There's a multi-national coalition who is trying to ensure peace and stability, insurgents who want neither, and the people stuck in the between. Religion also plays in important role.
9. This is what happens when kids stay hours in front of a computer.
Serial Experiments Lain
Lain Iwakura is a shy, withdrawn girl who one day receives an e-Mail message from friend, who just so happens to have committed suicide a few days before. She tells Lain that her body is dead, but she is alive in the Wired (a global network analogous to the Internet). This prompts Lain to explore the fathoms of the Wired and, subsequently, her own mind.
There are many words a first time viewer would use to describe Serial Experiments Lain: weird, I don't get it, what the f*ck is going on...etc. If you probably hadn't guessed, this is a very abstract series, dealing with consciousness, reality, and technology so don't beat yourself up if you didn't get it the first time.
8. The undead + the mafia + revenge = Brilliant
Brandon Heat. Harry MacDowell. They were childhood friends, brothers even. From the slums of the city, they joined the criminal syndicate, Millennion, in search of a better life. There, Brandon became the organization's premier hit-man. He was loyal to Millennion. But Harry, he was ambitious, and spent climbing the ranks of the organization until one day he would become the boss. But Brandon's loyalty to the organization and it's boss, Big Daddy, would put him at odds with Harry's goals, until brother turned against brother. Now Brandon Heat is no longer Brandon Heat. He has risen from the grave to take vengeance against the organization he once served and the friend who betrayed him.
This series has all the styling of a mafia film with sci-fi elements. The undead element does weave itself in quite nicely, forwarding the plot, and not coming off as campy or ridiculous. The way the story develops is also quite ingenious, allowing it to develop the characters and identify with them. This is done very well towards the final four episodes. But where this series does an especially good job is it's depiction of mafia life, which is on par with many of the films we associate with mobsters, gangsters, criminal syndicate and so on. From beginning to end you see the two main characters as the go from soldier to hit man to lieutenant to boss. Everything from internal politics and betrayal to the kind of work mafioso do. The plot is very engaging as well, moves at a good pace.
7. Garbage collection.......in space.
In the near future, man begun to travel among the stars and has started to colonize. As mankind leaves behind Earth, he also leaves behind.....trash, know as debris. This is where Half-Section comes in. Half-Section, officially known as Debris Section, is a department with in the Technora Corp. charged with collecting any and all debris floating in orbit. Why, you ask? Because the speed at which this debris travels in space is close to that of a bullet which can severely damage or destroy any space vessel or station.
Hachirota "Hachimaki" Hoshino, along with Tanabe, Fee, and Yuri make up this Half Section. But Hachimaki has greater aspirations than being an stellar garbage collector.
This is perhaps the best series which depicts life as an astronaut, which is no surprise considering JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) served as a consultant to the series. Don't be surprised if you learn something about mankind in outer space. It also handles the issue of inequality between developing nations and industrialized nations. In the series, an organization of first-world countries called INTO (which is analogous to NATO), controls most of space resources, which means non-INTO nations get much of these resources.
One of the great things about this series is it's international ensemble. The following nationalities are represented: Japan, USA, Russia, Germany, China, and India, all of which played a role in space travel in some way.
The characters are completely believable, as are their relationships. They are not all saints, but they try to do their best.
6. Revenge never looked so good.
Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas retold in the 50th century A.D. and through the eyes of Albert de Morcerf, the son Fernand de Morcerf, the man who betrayed his own friend and took his fiancÃ©e, Mercedes, for himself. That friend was Edmond DantÃ¨s, who has returned as the mysterious and decadently rich Count of Monte Cristo. His return will set in motion his long-awaited revenge against his former friends who betrayed him and left him in a cell to die.
Perhaps the greatest retelling of the classic novel while staying true to it's essence and themes. It, in some ways acts as a character study on the Count. The Count is one of the most intriguing, vibrant, entrancing characters, ever! You are continually fascinated by him; his machinations, his style, his decadence, his cleverness. This is a man so transfixed on revenge, so passionate about it, he is oblivious to everything else, seeing only what will further his goal as of any value. You want him to succeed, even though he's a very cold-hearted man.
Something else that is unique about this drama, and make no mistake, it is a very good drama, is the art style. Instead of typical coloring, it uses the pastiche method, bring out more detail in patterns, making the clothing and environment eye-catching and beautiful, as well as giving the series it's je ne sais qua. The music, classical from various movements, ties the series to it's 19th century french roots and is very appropriate.
5. Boat full of badasses. Pure and Simple.
Rokuro Okajima was just your typical salaryman (Jp. office drone) for a Japanese corporation, until he was left high and dry after he was kidnapped by pirates in Southeast Asia. In the end, after surviving his ordeal, he decided he was tired of being a salaryman for corporation and decided to join the crew of the pirate/mercenary crew which kidnapped him.
He is now a member of the crew of the torpedo boat, Black Lagoon. And know has to deal with other pirates, the Russian mafia, Colombians, Neo-Nazis, terrorists and a slew of other disreputable people. But they pale in comparison to his fellow crew members, who are -- in short -- f*cking insane.
This is some Tarantino sh*t right here. There's gratuitous blood and violence, a gorgeous female protagonist that you wouldn't dare f*ck with, great dialogue, engrossing plot with real world elements, and copious amount of profanity. The characters are completely believable and fleshed out. This could have easily been a live-action series produced for premium T.V.
On a deeper note, it also has an existentialist streak. It at times deals with morality, absurdity, value of human life, man's inhumanity to itself and idealism. So it's not just all guns and girls.
A raw, gritty, hardcore series.
This is what I mean
4. The world is my chess board
Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
Lelouch. That is the name of the young man with royal blood who has been given a unique and powerful gift, Geass. It is with this gift that he will change the course of world history forever.
Lelouch vi Britannia is the outcast son of the Emperor of the Britannian Empire, an Empire so vast that it covers 1/3 of the Earth's surface. Now living in Area 11 of the Empire (Japan), Lelouch waits for his chance exact his revenge on his father, the Emperor, for the death of his mother, and to make the world a better place for his younger sister Nunnally.
This is one of the most engrossing dramas available, anime or live-action. It does a great job chronicling the rise of it's main protagonist from school boy to world player.
The character of Lelouch is very three-dimensional. We fear him, respect him, despise him, we constantly at awe at what he does and how he does it. A master chess player who is 2 steps ahead of everyone. He is also a tragic figure, having to lose and sacrifice a great deal.
The series also does a great job juxtaposing Lelouch and his best friend, Suzaku Kururugi. While Lelouch is a Britannian he fights for the sake of Japan by any means necessary. Suzaku on the other hand is Japanese and fights alongside Britannia with noble intentions and methods.
There are also various strong female characters such as Kallen and C 2.
Without going into too much detail, the series explores nationality, morality, ends vs. means, freedom fighter vs. terrorist, strength, conflict and peace, and personae.
3. Hot jazz and space cowboys
In a distant future, after cataclysm that wiped out much of the Earth's population, man has moved west, so to speak, living further out in the frontier of the solar system. But unfortunately, the justice system has yet to catch up to such a vast territory of space. This where bounty hunters like Spike, Jet, Fay, and Ed make a living, or at least try to. This cool quartet wonders through space looking for the next big bounty, all the while getting into one misadventure after the other with little money to show for it.
This is perhaps the first adult-oriented anime Americans were exposed to thanks to Adult Swim and it remains a perennial favorite amongst anime fans. Why? Well, let's start off with the music. The music scene here is cool jazz, with a little bebop provided by The Seatbelts. Yoko Kanno, who is one of the greatest musicians to come from Japan, also lends her talents to this series (By the way, I suggest you listen to some of her work).
Cowboy Bebop has a very Noir feel to it, from the story lines to the characters. Spike and Jet are two hard-boiled bounty hunters with a past with Fey as the femme fatale. Dialogue is very cool and authentic.
People do smoke here, a lot, especially Spike. There is blood, but not very gratuitous and people do die and the series is not shy about it either.
Perhaps the biggest theme of this story is the past, nearly everyone it the story is either trying to reconcile, forget, or discover their past. The past eventually catches up them.
See you later...Space Cowboy
Cowboy Bebop Opening - It's time to blow this scene, get everybody and their stuff together. O.K 3,2,1..Let's jam!
2. The Matrix meets C.S.I
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
In 2030, the line between man and machine has blurred. Man is now integrated with technology; physically, socially, and mentally. The only thing differentiating man from machine is his ghost, or soul, the confluence of signature thoughts, desires and personality.
In the city of New Port, Japan, Public Security Section 9 is a counter-terrorist network and anti-crime unit operating for the Japanese government composed of highly-skilled former military and police officers. In particular, Section 9 and its members are among the best cyber warfare operatives in the country, and as a result usually end up involved in case relating to the internet, such as hacking and cyber terrorism.
This is a very dense series. You need to pay serious attention to know what exactly is going on and it helps if you know the tech lingo. This is certainly not a series for dull-minded people. Every single character is as real as it gets with authentic personalities. The most stunning is the Makoto Kusanagi, the female de facto leader on the field, who is strong, highly intelligent, and in charge. Dialogue is also well written and very modern. Since Section 9 is a government agency, they have to deal with politics as usual and bureaucracy, which is depicted very realistically and believably.
Many themes run through the series, such as the role technology plays in human life, Japanese culture, humanness, teamwork, war, and politics among others.
This is a series for those who don't mind a little thinking with their entertainment.
Being human has become a liability... - GitS:SAC
1. You Are (Not) Alone - Neon Genesis Evangelion
In the year 2000, Earth experienced the Second Impact, an apocalyptic event in Antarctica, which caused drastic changes in the global climate, leading to war, death and extinction. Thought to have been an asteroid, it was later revealed that the Second Impact was the doing of an extraterrestrial entity know as an Angel.
The year is 2015 and the Angels have returned. Enter NERV, an advanced high-tech paramilitary organization who has built the only weapon capable of defeating the Angels; Evangelion, a cutting-edge bio-mechanical robot.
Yet the only humans capable of piloting an Eva are those born after the Second Impact, in other words, children. These select children are the only things standing between human civilization and complete annihilation.
Changed the way I think about myself, others, reality, anime....
One wild ride.
Just because they didn't make the list doesn't mean you shouldn't check them out!
13) Fullmetal Alchemist
14) Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team
15) Samurai Champloo
16) Big O
17) Death Note
18) Samurai 7
No one can be told how great anime is....... - ......you just have to see it for yourself.
Titles you should REALLY be getting.
Agree with this list? Is there a series that you think should've been included? Do you think I could've done better? Feel free to tell me.
Remember, these are just series. No OVA's or Films. So, dear otaku, don't complain that I forgot to include Appleseed or Hellsing Ultimate or Afro Samurai.