DoubleSama’s Top 10 Anime (2019 Edition)

DoubleSama’s Top 10 Anime (2019 Edition)

Introduction

Today is December 19, 2019, which means it’s officially the second anniversary of DoubleSama.com. And with this second anniversary comes my third (second annual) top 10 anime post. Basically, every year I make a countdown list of my top 10 anime of all time.

It’s just an excuse for me to discuss some of my favorite anime once per year.

And while the list doesn’t change entirely from year to year, I do watch a significant number of anime. So every year some anime get dropped from the list, some anime I’ve watched in the past year get added to the list, and some anime simply swap positions on the list.

If you’re interested in reading the previous two top 10 anime lists, they can be found here:

But before we get into this year’s list, let’s quickly go over the anime which had to be cut this year, and one honorable mention.

Re:ZERO got bumped from the 10th position, but considering the second season has been announced, there’s a chance it’ll make a comeback in the 2020. From 9th position, Your Lie in April also got bumped off the list. Don’t get me wrong, I still love it, but it’s just not a top 10 anymore.

And the honorable mention is for Attack on Titan, which nearly made a comeback onto this year’s list. It was featured in the 8th position on my original list, but didn’t quite make the cut for the 2018 list. Season 3 Part 2 was almost good enough to bring the series back.

10. Fullmetal Alchemist

Once at a comfortable fifth position, Fullmetal Alchemist is barely hanging on to a place in my top 10. Is it a great anime? Yes, obviously, but as I’ve seen more anime, I’ve come across even more which are better than it.

And although I mention this every time I discuss this series, when I talk about Fullmetal Alchemist, I’m generally referring to both the original version and Brotherhood. I have both versions rated the same, though I do actually prefer the story of the 2003 version which is a pretty unpopular opinion.

If you haven’t seen this series yet, no matter who you are, I recommend you watch it. The other series on this top 10 list might not be for everyone, but Fullmetal Alchemist is one of those rare anime which is. I’d also suggest watching the 2003 version first specifically because it’s hard for some people to go back and watch that after watching the improved visuals of Brotherhood.

9. A Silent Voice

A Silent Voice is the first movie on this list, and is an anime movie I don’t think can truly be appreciated until you’re completely done with school. I know that some high schoolers, or even college students, will think I’m talking down to them when I say this, but that’s not the case.

This is a story about school bullying and the effects it can have on people, specifically those with disabilities (in this case deafness). I don’t believe that you can actually reflect on the movie and how it ties into your own school experiences until you’re beyond them.

I know that if I had watched this movie while still in school it wouldn’t have had nearly the same impact. So basically, if you’re in school still, this is a great movie, but if you’re out of school I think you’ll be able to appreciate the messages of this movie a lot more.

Shouya Ishida in elementary school from the anime movie A Silent Voice
A Silent Voice

8. KonoSuba

KonoSuba is the only comedy anime on my top 10 list, and I think it has been every single time I’ve made one. The problem with most comedy anime is that comedy is extremely subjective. And while that’s still the case with KonoSuba — and this may just mean it’s my kind of comedy — the way this series tackles comedy is what sets it apart.

You get four completely irredeemable people with nothing in common and throw them all together because they’re misfits. Then you drop them into crazy, yet stereotypical situations and see how they react.

The beauty of KonoSuba is the combination of the characters interacting with the situations they find themselves in while also interacting with each other. Most comedy series which try to go this route end up focusing more on one or the other, but KonoSuba has the perfect balance.

7. Mononoke (New!)

The first new anime to this list this year is Mononoke, and no, I don’t mean Princess Mononoke. Everyone thinks that’s the anime I’m referring to when I mention it. Mononoke started off as a short story as part of the Ayakashi: Japanese Classic Horror anthology, but later became a series of its own.

I had wanted to watch this anime for a long time, but simply didn’t get around to doing so until this year. It’s a bit hard to explain, but it’s formatted in a way which I really like — it has mini arcs which each deal with a specific kind of yokai from Japanese folklore.

If you’re already familiar with the Monogatari Series, or even the lesser Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai, then that’s basically what this series is like. However, Mononoke is also much more visually stylized than either of those series, which is also something I enjoy about it.

The medicine seller and Kayo from the anime series Mononoke
Mononoke

6. March comes in like a lion (New!)

The second new anime to this list is March comes in like a lion. Specifically, it was the second season of this series which bumped it onto my list. The first season was good, but nowhere near good enough to be within my top 10. The second season basically takes everything good about the first season and drops the bad.

If you like slow burning drama anime, then I highly recommend March comes in like a lion. Actually, eight of the 10 anime on this list are technically dramas. But if drama specifically is what you want, then this is my pick for you.

The series follows a young, professional shogi player as he learns to balance school, shogi, family, and life in general. The second season, however, focuses a lot more on the supporting cast, and I think developing all of them really helped the series as a whole.

Rei Kiriyama's shogi friends from the anime series March comes in like a lion
March comes in like a lion

5. Your Name.

Your Name. is basically the definitive anime movie. When it came out it was the highest rated movie ever in Japan, and while I haven’t checked, it still probably holds that title. But, “spoiler,” it’s actually no longer the top movie on my list. Your Name. has been dropped from fourth place down to fifth.

And, I do feel the need to mention that some people will say including this movie on my list is a cop out because everyone has it on their list, or that it’s overrated. Well, I sort of agree with those points, but at the same time I think they’re incorrect. There’s a reason this is considered the best anime movie by many.

It looks great, the characters are engaging, the soundtrack is outstanding, the plot is good too when it’s there, and it was one of the few anime to actually make me feel something. That’s not the easiest thing to do, so any time it happens I know there’s something special about the anime.

4. In This Corner of the World

In This Corner of the World is the movie Your Name. was swapped with on my list. I’ve had an entire year more to think about these two movies since I last ranked them, and in that time I’ve come to appreciate In This Corner of the World even more.

As far as I’m concerned, it was always a 10/10 movie, but the more I think about this movie the more attention and love I feel it deserves. It’s a historical drama which takes place in a town on the outskirts of Hiroshima during World War II. If you know anything about history, you already know how that’s going to go down.

But what makes this movie so special is how it tells its story. It’s from the perspective of a Japanese civilian — a girl who’s just trying to live her life and has nothing to do with the war. And, the watercolor aesthetic the visuals have adds another layer of innocence onto the whole thing. If you want to watch the best anime movie I’ve ever seen, watch this.

Suzu Urano and Harumi Kuromura from the anime movie In This Corner of the World
In This Corner of the World

3. Violet Evergarden

I considered bumping Violet Evergarden up to the number two spot, but decided against it after a bit more thought. I love Violet Evergarden, and I’ll go on record saying that episode 10 is the single greatest episode of any anime ever made. However, I don’t think it’s the very best anime overall.

And another reason why I didn’t want to bump it up on my list quite yet is because I actually haven’t seen the OVA movie which came out back in August. I saw the OVA episode, but not the OVA movie. There’s also another movie for it coming out in April of 2020 I believe. So Violet just might be higher up on my list by this time next year.

But the main takeaway here is that if you want to see the single best anime episode ever, you need to watch Violet Evergarden. There’s also a significant chance that this series will make you cry — and as far as I’m concerned that means it’s doing its job perfectly.

2. Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Madoka Magica is still here on my list after being my first ever 10/10 anime (the top six anime on this list I have rated at 10). I’ve had a soft spot for magical girl anime ever since watching Sailor Moon as a kid, but younger me could never have imagined that a series like Madoka Magica would come along.

This series changed everything when it came to magical girl anime. It follows just enough of the tropes to be recognizable as a magical girl series, but breaks all the rest in the most satisfying ways possible. And, we’re getting new Madoka Magica content in 2020 after seven years of waiting.

Also, for any males out there who look at Madoka Magica and think it’s a “girls’ anime,” I thought the same thing too at one point. But then I was convinced to watch it and realized how wrong I was for judging this series based on the visuals. That’s part of the reason why I’ll watch basically anything now.

1. The Monogatari Series

For the third time in a row, the Monogatari Series takes the top spot. And no, I don’t have it listed as number one because it’s my favorite anime — although it is. If that’s how I was ranking these series, then Naruto: Shippūden would be right up here as well, but it’s not.

At this point it’s almost hard for me to explain why the Monogatari Series is so good because I feel like I already do that every chance I get. What more is there for me to say about it to convince people to watch it?

However, although this is the best anime in my mind because of its characters, witty dialogue, and visuals, I recognize that this series isn’t for everyone. In fact, it’s pretty niche. But at the same time, I think it’s safe to say that the majority of anime on this top 10 list are fairly niche — general anime just aren’t typically as good.

If you’re into extremely developed characters, Japanese wordplay and folklore, reading a lot of dialogue, committing a lot of time to one series, and, of course, cute girls, then this is the anime for you. But if even one of those aspects doesn’t seem like something you’d be into, then you might not like this series much because it doubles down on all of it.

Conclusion

If you enjoyed this top 10 list, or if you found any good recommendations thanks to it, click the like button ❤ down below. Also follow me over on Twitter @DoubleSama so you don’t miss out on any future content. And, come join our Discord server if you’re interested in discussing anime with other members of the community.

Finally, I’d like to thank HeavyROMAN and CaptainRainbowPizza for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika and Sensei tiers respectively this month. To learn more about how you too can become a supporter of this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

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