When it comes to what my favorite anime is, I will list 10 films, 10 TV series, and 10 OVAs. I don’t consider these picks to be the best anime. These are simply my favorites, though some of the picks can easily be considered to be the best anime out there. I had to leave out many of my favorites in order to narrow this list to 30 titles. For example, I left out Castle in the Sky (1986) and Spirited Away (2001) because I didn’t want to include many Studio Ghibli films, and I left out Mobile Suit Gundam F91 (1991) because I didn’t want to include many Gundam titles.
Favorite TV series: Cowboy Bebop, Neon Genesis Evangelion, The Vision of Escaflowne, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Maison Ikkoku, Gurren Lagann, Martian Successor Nadesico, Saber Marionette J, Kimagure Orange Road.
Favorite OVAs: Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki, Bubblegum Crisis, Macross Plus, Gunbuster, Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket, Rurouni Kenshin: Trust & Betrayal, Giant Robo, Moldiver, Oh My Goddess!.
Favorite films: The Fuma Conspiracy (1987), Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989), Ghost in the Shell (1995), Akira (1988), Perfect Blue (1997), Patlabor 2: The Movie (1993), Whisper of the Heart (1995), Grave of the Fireflies (1988), Mobile Suit Gundam: Char’s Counterattack (1988), Ninja Scroll (1993).
I got to see Neon Genesis Evangelion again in 2021. This was probably my third time watching this series from beginning to end. Of course, after I finished watching the series, I also watched Death & Rebirth (1997) and The End of Evangelion (1997). The DVD for Death & Rebirth was probably the first DVD that I ever bought. This happened soon after I graduated from high school, and I think that I bought it in new condition at Future Shop, which was a Canadian electronics store chain. The first half of the film, Death, is a re-cap editing together of scenes from the first 24 episodes of the series. It’s my favorite part of the film, and I watched it multiple times since I bought the DVD. To be honest, I don’t like the second half of the film, Rebirth, much, and I don’t like The End of Evangelion much either. Since The End of Evangelion was released in the 1990s, when anime was still in its golden age, it’s a visually impressive film. The animation is often striking. Some of the scenes are inspired and memorable. But, overall, I don’t find the film to be all that interesting or appealing. Therefore, I watch it only when I decide to watch the TV series from beginning to end in order to have a feeling of completion. Since Evangelion is one of my favorite anime, it’s not surprising that I enjoyed watching it again. When I watch it, I don’t get to relive my childhood, as some people say, because I didn’t watch it for the first time when I was a child, but it does kind of make me relive the time after I graduated from high school because that’s when I watched it for the first time. By the way, Evangelion has an interesting story. For example, I recommend reading about the First Ancenstral Race on the internet. Before I watched Evangelion again in 2021, I watched The Vision of Escaflowne again in 2020. Well, now I’m slowly watching Cowboy Bebop again because it’s another series that I haven’t seen in years. When it comes to the films that I’ve seen recently, I can say that I enjoyed seeing Avatar (2009) again. I got to see it for the first time in 2009, right after it was released in theaters. Back then, I had to wear 3D glasses when I watched it in a theater. In my opinion, the glasses don’t improve the viewing experience of this film. I don’t consider Avatar to be one of James Cameron’s best films, but it’s still one of the best films of the last two decades, in my opinion. Some parts of the film are inspired. The part of the film that I like the most is the battle at the end between Quaritch’s men and the Na’vi, and I like the scene near the end in which Neytiri meets Jake Sully for the first time. What’s odd is that I haven’t seen Avatar since 2009, when I watched it for the first time. Seeing it again in 2022 was only my second time. I like it more now than I did back then. It’s not surprising that I’m still watching Dallas. This TV series has 14 seasons and 357 episodes. I don’t yet know if I’ll watch this show until the very end. This will depend on how good it continues to be. I’m already watching season 7 of the show, and I’ve got to say that it continues to be wonderful. I particularly liked seeing season 6, in which J.R. Ewing and Bobby Ewing fight for control of Ewing Oil. I sure do like the clothes, especially the suits, that they wore in that season. What’s interesting is that I feel like I’ve already been watching Dallas for a very long time. Well, this is true because I’ve already seen over 130 episodes of the show, but season 7 was originally screened on television from 1983 to 1984. So, I still haven’t even watched the mid-1980s phase of the show yet. Hopefully, the show remains as good as it is now for several more seasons. In an earlier post, I pointed out that I like Larry Hagman’s performance and Jim Davis’s performance the most in the show. I like Patrick Duffy’s performance too. He obviously played the most sympathetic male character. Among the women of the cast, I think that Linda Gray’s performance is the best. What surprised me is that Priscilla Presley delivered a good performance as Jenna Wade. Before that, I’ve seen her only in the Naked Gun films. In the Naked Gun films, she played a character that’s almost an airhead. In season 7, Presley joined the main cast of Dallas as Jenna, and I’ve got to say that she played Jenna as a pretty sharp woman.
I can point out that I bought a PlayStation 4 several months ago. Before I bought it, I didn’t think that I’d buy it this early. I used to think that I’d eventually buy it because some of the video games that I want to play are available only on the PS4, but I thought that I’d buy it a few years from now. I bought it at the same pawn shop where I bought my Xbox 360, and I bought it because it was on sale. It cost me less than $150. The version of the PS4 that I bought is the original one, with 500 GB of storage, and I’d say that its condition is very good. There was a reason for the somewhat low price of the console, however, as I later found out. The console itself is in excellent condition, but the Blu-ray drive didn’t work. Since I didn’t want to spend time on finding out if the drive can be fixed or not, I ordered a replacement drive on eBay. The first replacement drive arrived in April from a seller in the United States, but it didn’t work. After returning it, I ordered a replacement drive from a seller in the United Kingdom. This second replacement drive does work. I’ve kept the original broken Blu-ray drive because maybe I’ll try to fix it in the future. I personally don’t like the PS4 as much as the PlayStation 3. I find the graphical user interface of the PS3 to be more appealing, for example. The PS3 was released at about the time when I became interested in gaming. Back then, I couldn’t own a PlayStation 3 or any other console, but I still read about it and watched videos about it because I was impressed by its features and design. I already had small hopes of buying a PS2, but I couldn’t even dream of buying a PS3 back then because of its high price. It seems to me that the success of the PS1 and the PS2 gave quite a boost to Sony because the profits allowed Sony to be quite ambitious in the 2000s and in the early-2010s. Back then, Sony released various walkmans, smarthphones, television sets, laptops, and many other quality electronic devices. It also released the PlayStation Portable, which is a beautiful handheld game console, in my opinion. Nowadays, electronic devices made by Sony are barely present in stores or they’re not present at all. The wide variety and availability of electronic devices in the 2000s is another thing that makes me look back with some fondness at that time. I recently bought a used Sony CD player (Walkman D-EJ361), which was released in 2002, in order to play the compact discs that I have now. Like many other electronic devices made by Sony in the 2000s, it looks beautiful. I remember that in the mid-2000s, I bought a Sony MiniDisc player. The model was probably the Walkman MZ-DH10P. I bought it at an electronics store that was located in Downtown Vancouver, on Seymour Street, near the Granville SkyTrain station. I remember that I was impressed by how well it played music and by how good it looked, but, for some reason, I returned it soon after I bought it. Well, nowadays, I regret returning it. Back then, I was much younger, less knowledgeable, and less restrained. Heck, at that time, Sony even managed to make the best Spider-Man films ever, Spider-Man (2002) and Spider-Man 2 (2004), with its studio Columbia Pictures. Therefore, now that I think about it, Sony provided buyers with many inspired, quality products at that time, when the company was in one of its heydays. In the 2010s, when Sony began to go into a slump, it released the terrible The Amazing Spider-Man films, for example. Moreover, at the same time, Sony failed to turn the PlayStation Vita into a success. I don’t like the Vita as much as I like the PSP, but the Vita was still a very impressive handheld for its time. Actually, the Vita is still an impressive handheld. I guess that in the 2010s Sony kind of went the way of the Internet Archive digital library. Even a few years ago, the Internet Archive provided people with numerous free books and other useful files. Nowadays, like many other popular American websites, it restricts access to information and to quality content, books have to be “borrowed” on it, and it has wiped out the numerous free files that used to be available on it. Anyway, I also remember seeing Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight films very well at that time. Kick-Ass (2010) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012) are two superhero films that I now remember seeing with some fondness. They’re by no means perfect, but there are still some inspired scenes in them and they feature some excellent music. In addition, they’re quite different from the films that are made by Marvel Studios. The Dark Knight Rises, in particular, is a film that contains very little comedy. It’s a serious and quite ambitious film that I got to see more than once in a theater. I think that, artistically, it’s Nolan’s best Dark Knight film, and it’s my favorite Dark Knight film. One of the big reasons why I like it is because it features an excellent music score by Hans Zimmer. Moreover, the film features Batman’s incredible “WHERE’S THE TRIGGER?!!!” line and Talia al Ghul’s “awesome” death scene. My second favorite Dark Knight film is Batman Begins (2005). Anyway, many video games got released for the PS4, and several of them are indeed great games. One of the games that I’ve already bought and downloaded is God of War (2018). I bought it because it was on sale. I also bought and downloaded Bloodborne, which is the PS4 game that I wanted to play the most. I began playing these games but then stopped after a few hours of playing because I wanted to finish playing some other games first. Therefore, I can’t get into what I think about them yet. I can’t really say anything more about my PS4 for now because I’ve hardly used it since I bought it. It’s interesting that the PS4 is the second best-selling home console. The Nintendo Switch, which I haven’t bought and which I don’t plan on buying, is just behind it when it comes to sales. The PlayStation 2 is still the best-selling console of all time, and it’s also the first video game console that I ever bought.
One novel that I have finished reading recently is John Brunner’s Total Eclipse. I’ve wanted to finish reading an edgy and brilliant science-fiction novel for quite some time, but I must admit that I haven’t been reading much in the last several months. Still, I’ve been craving to finish reading as good a novel as Inherit the Stars (1977), Blood Music (1985), Emergence (1984), or The Robots of Dawn (1983) for quite some time. Total Eclipse is such a novel, and it has mostly satisfied my craving for now. I haven’t read any other novels by Brunner yet, but Total Eclipse is probably one of his best. Good and original science-fiction novels like Total Eclipse simply don’t get written anymore. One of the novels that I’m still reading, for example, is Sylvain Neuvel’s Sleeping Giants (2016). It’s considered by some readers and critics to be one of the best science-fiction novels of the last decade. In reality, however, it’s a disappointment if it’s compared to the science-fiction of the 20th century. Sleeping Giants isn’t a bad novel, but it is pretty dull and not particularly interesting. By today’s standards, however, it’s considered to be good because today’s standards for novels are low. Perhaps I will review Sleeping Giants in more detail after I finish reading it. Something else that I’ve enjoyed reading lately is Masamune Shirow’s Ghost in the Shell manga. It turns out that it’s not only the anime films, Ghost in the Shell (1995) and Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence (2004), that are worth seeing. The manga is pretty awesome too. It’s best to get the hardcover deluxe edition of the manga because it would look good on any bookshelf. The manga is large, and it features some beautiful colored pages.