2018 Year in Review

2018 Year in Review

Introduction

Let’s start off the final post of 2018 with a fun fact. Did you know that not only is this the last post of the year, but it’s also my 365th post total? What a coincidence!

At this time last year DoubleSama.com was still brand new and so I didn’t do anything particularly special for New Years, however, I think something along the lines of what I’ll be doing today will become the tradition from here on out. So, with that in mind, be sure to leave your feedback over on Discord or in the comments at the end.

And, finally, before we begin with the actual content of today’s post, I’d like to remind you that I currently have a poll running over on Twitter to determine which fantasy series get added to my weekly review schedule. If there’s a series you really want to see in the Winter 2019 season, I suggest clicking the embedded Tweet below and voting.

Seasonal Statistics

It’s finally time to look back on 2018 and the first thing I need to make clear is that these statistics do not cover every anime which was airing throughout the year. Instead, they cover only the anime which started airing in 2018, and only those which I finished or am still watching.

There were many more anime I watched over the course of 2018, but if they didn’t begin airing in 2018 then they don’t count in this post. Further, there are many series from 2018 which I simply haven’t gotten around to watching yet, and so those too don’t count in this post.

What we’re left with are 48 anime spread across the four seasons, the distribution of which you can see in the graph below.

A graph depicting DoubleSama's number of anime completed by season
Number of Anime Completed by Season

From this data we can see that the Winter season had the most anime that interested me enough to start watching, and then subsequently complete. By comparison, the Spring season was lackluster in terms of anime I wanted to watch, and the Summer and Fall seasons slowly crawled back towards the scale of Winter.

So, what happened to the Spring season? Does this data show that I was simply burnt out on anime after the Winter season? To find out, we’ll have to take a look at the next graph (pictured below) which shows my average ratings for each season.

A graph depicting DoubleSama's average rating by season
Average Rating by Season

As you can see, not only did the Winter season have the most anime I was interested in watching, but it also had the best anime on average. Likewise, the Spring season had both the least amount of anime I was interested in and also the worst anime on average.

The Summer and Fall seasons still fell in the middle of the pack, but this time the Summer rating was down much closer to that of Spring and the Fall rating was still up near that of Winter. When looking at the data from both of these graphs put together, I think the conclusion is clear.

For whatever reason, there was a lull in the amount of good anime during the middle two seasons of the year. In Winter, all the anime ratings fell between 5-10, while Spring was 3-7, Summer was 2-9, and Fall was 3-9. The key takeaways here are that Winter had no “bad” anime, while Spring had no standout anime.

Now, of course these numbers don’t show the whole picture because I did drop one series in both the Winter and Spring seasons, but these dropped series don’t effect the statistics enough to make a huge impact.

2018 overall rating with weighted seasons
2018 Overall Rating

The chart above shows the weighting of each season (in percentages) and the overall rating of the 2018 year. Since the Winter season made up 31.3% of the anime I watched from 2018, it’s rating of 6.53 influences the overall rating of 2018 more than the 5.63 rating of Spring which only made up 16.7% of the anime.

So, what does this 2018 rating of 6.09 mean?

As far as I’m concerned, an average anime is a 5/10 since I use the full 10-point scale, so in that regard the 2018 year was above average anime-wise (in regards to the anime I watched). However, my personal average score on MAL is 6.46, so in that regard, 2018 was below average compared to everything I’ve watched all together.

If you’re wondering why my average score is 1.46 points higher than what I consider to be the average score, it’s simply because I, like most people, tend to pick anime to watch which I think I’ll like to begin with. This then skews my personal average in the positive direction.

That said, I do try to pick at least one anime to watch each season which I don’t think is actually going to be any good. However, instead of doing this to bring my average score down, I mainly do this so that you aren’t only reading reviews of good anime on my blog. Someone has to take one for the team and watch bad anime so you don’t have to.

Accolades

Now that we’ve covered the seasons and year as a whole, it’s time to look at some of the best of the best to come out of 2018. If you’re interested to see how I ranked every anime of 2018, there’s a table at the very end of this post with links to my reviews of each anime.

Although “Best Anime” is probably the category I should leave for last, it’s actually going to be the first one this time around simply because it affects most of the other categories. Unsurprisingly, Violet Evergarden wins the title of Best Anime of 2018.

If you haven’t read any of my various posts in which I mention this series, then just know that it’s nearly flawless, and if you need a good cry, then watch it. However, because Violet Evergarden is so good, it also would have won most of the other categories as well such as Best ED, Best OST, and Best Character.

Sure, I could have simply let that be the case (looking at you, Crunchyroll Anime Awards), but that’s no fun, now is it? So, instead I’ve decided to allow each anime only win one category. Or, at least you can think of it that way. Yes, Violet Evergarden actually won many of these categories, but let’s just humor the runners-up.

The next category, however, is one which Violet Evergarden wouldn’t have won: Worst Anime. This title goes to The Master of Ragnarok & Blesser of Einherjar. Some of you may know of my distaste for generic isekai series, and this one was the worst of the year, almost as bad as In Another World With My Smartphone from 2017.

Not only was the basic plot of this anime bad, but the execution and animation quality were poor as well. The only thing it really had going for it was maybe one good character design in the form of Linnea, but that’s about it.

The Best OP category is next, and surprisingly the Best OP of the year came just recently in the form of “Fighting Gold” from JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 5: Golden Wind. No, I didn’t go back and listen to all of the various OPs from the year, and yes “Fighting Gold” is recent and so easier to remember, but I think you’ll find this to be a fair choice.

Not only is the song “Fighting Gold” by Coda amazing, but the visuals of this OP are some of the best I’ve seen. It has brightly colored vector art (which I love), the visuals aren’t simply scenes from the anime, and it has a lot of references to what’s going to happen within the series.

But, I’d also like to mention that despite how good I think the JoJo’s OP is, this was actually a very close competition, with the Hanebado! OP coming in a close second. If you’re interested to read more about that OP in particular, I have a whole post breaking it down.

As for Best ED, “Michishirube” from Violet Evergarden would have won, but since it already won Best Anime, this category goes to “Koko Kara, Koko Kara” from A Place Further Than the Universe. I’ve discussed why I like this ED so much in the past but it really all comes down to a few key points.

First of all, it’s a character song, which means it’s sung by the voice actresses in-character. Second, it’s a fee-good ED both musically and visually, which perfectly fits with much of the anime. And, finally, I just really like the visuals of the light drawings.

I was considering “CheerS” from Cells at Work! as another possible winner, but aside from having a good song, I think it loses out to A Place Further Than the Universe in every other way.

The Best OST category is another which would have gone to Violet Evergarden, though this is only a recent development. Unlike with the OP/EDs, I did actually re-listen to the OSTs I was considering for this category, and during my re-listen, I came to the conclusion that Violet Evergarden’s was the best.

That said, this category goes to Devilman: Crybaby, which is actually the series I was going to award this title to before my re-listens anyway. Devilman: Crybaby just has such a unique OST compared to anything else from this year, and it works perfectly with the visuals of the series.

Not every song on the OST is the best, but there are enough songs in it that are to make it one of my top 5 anime OSTs of all time. Even if you haven’t seen Devilman: Crybaby, the OST is worth listening to on its own.

The final category of this section is the Best Character category. As I mentioned, Violet Evergarden would have won this category as well, with the titular Violet taking the prize, but alas, I couldn’t do that to all of you even if she is my anime daughter (sorry, Mayoi, you are too).

So, if Violet isn’t the best character of 2018 then who is? After scouring the series from this year and all the characters found within them, I actually came to a rather unexpected conclusion: Emile Bichelberger from How Not to Summon a Demon Lord.

I’ve seen a lot of popular anime reviewers hate on this series, and yet love TenSura, which is something I’ll never understand. However, despite what you think of How Not to Summon a Demon Lord, I think it would be pretty hard to argue against Emile being one of the best characters of the year.

For those of you who don’t know Emile, he’s the character who embodies the White Knight trope which is typically how isekai protagonists are portrayed. In fact, he explicitly refers to himself as an ally and defender of all women, regardless of whether they want his help or not.

While Emile is initially at odds with Diablo because he thinks he enslaves women, when he learns this isn’t the case he quickly changes his tune and designates himself as Diablo’s best friend. The combination of himself being a self-proclaimed White Knight and self-proclaimed best friend of a self-proclaimed demon lord make Emile one of the most entertaining characters to date.

But, that’s not all. While Emile certainly does talk up a big game, he can somewhat back it up too. Before Diablo appeared, Emile was considered the strongest adventurer in the guild, even though he’s nothing compared to some of the higher-leveled characters in the series.

We even see that his title of “ally and defender of all women” isn’t just for show either. Emile is very willing to risk his own life if it means saving one of his friends, or any woman for that matter. If you haven’t watched this anime, I recommend it even if only for Emile Bichelberger.

Conclusion

So, that’s just about it for my 2018 year in review. What did you think of my seasonal and full-year statistics? Were yours similar? And, what about the series I chose in my accolades section, what would you have picked for those categories? Let me know down in the comments.

As always, if you enjoyed this post then click the like button ❤ down below, and be sure to follow me on Twitter to stay up to date with all of my upcoming content. Speaking of Twitter, also remember to vote on the poll from the Introduction if you haven’t done so already.

Also, if you’d like to help support DoubleSama.com, then check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama to learn more about the various tiers and their respective benefits. This month, I’d like to thank Rob Wright, for supporting DoubleSama.com.

And, finally, if you’re interested in seeing how all of the 2018 anime I’ve watched this year stack up, below you’ll find a table with all 48 anime ranked in order along with which season they were a part of.

Anime Title Rating Season
Violet Evergarden 10 Winter
Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai 9 Fall
Violet Evergarden Special 9 Summer
Mitsuboshi Colors 8 Winter
Karakai Jouzu no Takagi-san 8 Winter
How Not to Summon a Demon Lord 8 Summer
A Place Further Than the Universe 7 Winter
Laid-Back Camp 7 Winter
Ms. Vampire who lives in my neighborhood. 7 Fall
Hinamatsuri 7 Spring
Devilman: Crybaby 7 Winter
Skull-face Bookseller Honda-san 7 Fall
Overlord III 7 Summer
Goblin Slayer 7 Fall
Megalo Box 7 Spring
SSSS.Gridman 7 Fall
Attack on Titan Season 3 Part 1 7 Summer
My Hero Academia Season 3 7 Spring
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 5: Golden Wind 7 Fall
Hakata Tonkotsu Ramens 7 Winter
Anima Yell! 7 Fall
Hanebado! 6 Summer
Cells at Work! 6 Summer
Comic Girls 6 Spring
UzaMaid! 6 Fall
SAO Alternative: Gun Gale Online 6 Spring
SAO: Alicization 6 Fall
One Room Second Season 6 Summer
Overlord II 6 Winter
Citrus 6 Winter
Record of Grancrest War 6 Winter
Angels of Death ONA 6 Fall
B: The Beginning 6 Winter
Harukana Receive 5 Summer
One Room Second Season Special 5 Summer
Darling in the FranXX 5 Winter
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime 5 Fall
A.I.C.O.: Incarnation 5 Winter
Death March to the Parallel World Rhapsody 5 Winter
Love To-LIE-Angle 5 Spring
Record of Grancrest War Special 5 Winter
Between the Sky and Sea 4 Fall
Angels of Death 4 Summer
Crossing Time 4 Spring
My Sister, My Writer 3 Fall
Island 3 Summer
SAO Alternative: Gun Gale Online Special 3 Spring
The Master of Ragnarok & Blesser of Einherjar 2 Summer
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