As you might’ve noticed I’ve been relatively quiet over the past few months on this platform. Or you know… I haven’t posted a review of any sort over here since the beginning of this weird year of 2020. And I’ve tried to come up with smart reasons for this that I could write in the next post but it never really worked as you might’ve noticed. At the end of the day, I have lost my motivation to write. Whether it is because I’ve had schoolwork to do or because I haven’t seen enough that warranted a review, I simply don’t know at this point. I was going to do a post about my favorite 25 or whatever anime of the decade, but something just didn’t feel right half-way through and that’s where it all ended. Something about writing about anime I didn’t care about just put me off for a while. I’ve been writing about films on my letterboxd but not much more than that. I kept the analytical side of myself I guess but I couldn’t write a lot of it onto paper. But now I need to do something. I’m not going to make this into the smart and long introduction that I always want and fail to make, I just want to write about six anime of the last decade that struck a chord on me.
The first of which is Boogiepop and Others (Boogiepop wa Warawanai). It’s a show that aired at the beginning of last year, and even though the first episode was incredibly confusing and weird, I really liked it. Something about the directing and especially the phenomenal music from Kensuke Ushio really hit me. I’m just a really big fan of stories that play with time and perspective and this show really did it for me. At the moment I’ve seen it twice and I’m still not sure if I actually like a majority of the show or am just trying to make myself like it. But after rediscovering Kensuke’s music I felt like I needed to bring it up even though I don’t have much of a reason to.
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure (JoJo no Kimyou na Bouken) is up next and it’s the one I’m probably the most conflicted on in hindsight. Out of all the shows on this list, Jojo is probably the show I’ve rated the lowest (as a whole I’ve given it a 7). It’s incredibly inconsistent and I mostly find part 4 interesting which in it of itself has a lot of problems with consistency. Yet still, I think the show has helped me in a lot of ways. To simplify it I began in a new school at the end of summer last year and was really scared about it. My friend group had basically split up and so I needed to find new friends, something I don’t think I had ever really tried to do before this point. I had always been in this group of guys who would bring in a new member every once in a while, so I never needed to do anything really. Now it was me who had to get things back to normal. And in a way, it may have been freeing seeing as I could really decide whom I wanted to hang with instead of just being with the ones who joined our group. But it wouldn’t really matter if I was shit at making friends in the first place. But after a few weeks, I actually found a few people I could hang out with, one of which being a fan anime. More specifically Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. At this point, I had only seen the first season (fuck you it’s a season) of the show and really didn’t like it. It didn’t really matter if it got better later, I just gave up after dragging my way through the season. But after my friend kept talking about Jojo, I felt like I had to get into it as well. And I’m not sure if it was for external reasons, of which I didn’t have while watching the first season, but I just really enjoyed it and I think it helped me in a lot of ways with feeling comfortable talking to at least one person in my new school. I can’t see what would’ve happened if I insisted on not watching Jojo, maybe nothing would’ve been different. But it makes me feel good knowing that I decided to do something that might have helped me feel comfortable at a new school.
But A Silent Voice (Koe no Katachi) is probably the first one on here where the movie itself has really changed me. I’m not going to say if I have a mental illness or not, I dislike saying anything without proper knowledge, especially regarding such an important topic. But this is probably one of the first films that really made me think about myself and if I’m happy. There are other films on here regarding my psyche, but this is one of the first ones where I realized that it had to do with it. There was something about the character Shouya Ishida that I could relate, well as much I seem to be capable of. Small things about his social anxiety just felt so real that it was hard to forget about. It’s not a movie I feel as passionate about as I did back in 2018 when I first watched it, maybe because I’ve gotten better at handling my anxieties or because it was right and I actually was faking it to myself for some unknown reason. But even though I can’t say I relate to Shouya as much as I did, it’s still important to me in a way. Plus you know, Kensuke makes another banger score.
And so seeing Laid-back Camp (Yuru camp) after that entry might feel weird. I can’t really explain why I have such a passion for the show. I enjoy it when watching, but just thinking back on it months later is what made it so memorable to me. It already has a pretty great score and fairly well writing, but it isn’t nearly as “good” as A Silent Voice. It’s in the Cute-Girls-Doing-Cute-Things genre I kind of despise so I don’t know why this worked so well for me. Yuru Camp is the only anime that I’ve bought the manga from. I don’t read a lot of manga, but for some reason, this was an exception. And I think it’s that the show doesn’t really feel like a comedy. It has jokes for sure, but they’re all directed at the characters and not the audience. And I think that made it a more pleasant show for me. It didn’t change the music constantly or make the characters do something wacky in front of the camera all the time. We just kind of see them hang around, not in service of some audience behind a fourth wall, but just to themself. And I keep thinking about that to this day.
Looking at my past, anime has never really been a part of it. I didn’t dislike it or anything, I couldn’t care less about it in fact. It was just a neutral part of my life, one that didn’t exist in fact. But around the end of 2017, I rediscovered Porter Robinson, an artist I was obsessed over for a while but just kind of forgot until I listened to Shelter. It was one of those music videos that just really hit me, so I had to watch more. I still listen to Robinson’s music, I think Something Comforting is one of my favorite songs ever. But when I think about the impact he has had on me I think about how it leads to me watching anime. And while I saw a few anime after that, mainly Blame! the movie, I think Little Witch Academia was the one that really did it for me. I’ve always been a fan of cartoons, still am. So Trigger’s simple artstyle is one I still admire I think is one of the best in the industry. And for someone who was looking for a more animated show to watch, I couldn’t have picked a better one. Little Witch Academia is one of the most fun tv-shows I’ve seen ever, and I think that’s what matters. I’ve tried to come up with interesting themes you can find in the show, to have a good reason to love this show as much as I do. But I want to be more honest now, and I just think the animation is really well handled and the characters are super fun, and I don’t think it should be about more than that.
But the entry I find the most difficult to talk about is probably Your Name, my favorite piece of media ever. I’m in the process of writing a youtube script for why I love the film, and I’ve written and rewritten it numerous times, and at this point trashed a whole year of progress just to start over. There is a lot I can say about Your Name, and I have no idea how I should do it. I don’t really want to spoil anything here, but the film’s exploration of hopelessness and how people often use it do feel less responsible for their lives. But most importantly, the ending scene is probably one of the few scenes in media I can truly relate to. I honestly don’t think there’s a character more like me than Taki Tachibana, and I’ve never been able to not think about that. It’s a film that puts a lot of weight on me, cause I never seem to know if my reasons for liking the film is valid, or if I actually like the film or am just lying to myself. And I don’t have a way of concluding this other than saying that if you also feel this way, then I hope that stops.
So hopefully this is enough for me to start writing more stuff. Even if I don’t have a lot to say about a show or movie, I might as well just do it for the sake of it. If anything, to stop feeling like I’m not doing anything at all.