Top Picks – Summer 2009 Anime, Part 2: Genre and Misfit Awards

I feel bad that I didn’t give Sora no Manimani any awards so this is it’s consolation prize.

I’ve never seriously thought of making The Null Set a team blog mainly because doing so, I think, would lessen the personal drive towards becoming a better writer. However, I do wonder sometimes how it would look but until now, there’s been no real why to see. What’s changed is that Janette over at Borderline Hikkomori decided to do a summer seasonal review using the same format as I have here. Which is really cool by itself, but by using the same structure, one could mentally splice the two features together and imagine what a combined piece would look like. The result is very interesting so maybe there’s something to the idea of a team blog.

Enough rambling, let’s head to the next batch of awards. 🙂

Best Action


Winner:Phantom ~ Requiem of Phantom ~

Runner-up:Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood

My dislike of the ending of Phantom won’t get in way of praising it for what it did right which includes it’s action scenes. The show wasn’t overloaded with action scenes; instead, it balanced the quality action scenes with building the plot and characters – never allowing one to overrun the show.

Best Fight


Winner: Mustang vs. Lust from Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Easiest. Decision. This. Season. This fight alone made redoing the series worth it.

Best Comedy


Winner:Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei S. 3

Runner-up: Taishou Yakyuu Musume

I initially feared that the drop in animation quality (thanks to Shaft doing Bakemonogatari as well) would translate to a weak season of Despair but I wrong. There’s still plenty of laughs to be had as the world continues to serve up things to despair over. And it’s the perfect vehicle to allow Shaft to be Shaft.

Most Entertaining


Winner:Taishou Yakyuu Musume

Another easy pick. If I had to pick one word to describe Taishou Yakyuu Musume it would be “entertaining” because no matter what was going on, the show always left a smile on my face and a feeling of warmth in my heart.

Most Interesting Setting


Winner: Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood

A world where alchemy actually works opens up so many possibilities – both good and bad – and Full Metal Alchemist has done a very good job is showing both. This is further augmented by the addition of different lands (that I don’t remember the first iteration talking about) and different alchemy traditions.

Best Plot


Winner: Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Runner-up: Phantom ~ Requiem of Phantom ~

During the spring season, watching Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood felt weird and largely boring because I was familiar with the original series and the compressed storytelling glossed over many of the parts I liked. I knew we’d get to new material but it was still surprising how quickly the show went from ho-hum to awesome. It seems like every episode this season has been chalk full of shocking revelations and unexpected twists which leaves me on the edge-of-my-seat and wanting more.

Best Story


Winner: Aoi Hana

Runner-up:Taishou Yakyuu Musume

I read the review that ANN posted for Aoi Hana and I was liking it until the reviewer started talking about the character’s selfhoods and their sexuality because, while I’m sure the reviewer meant well, I think when the reviewer focuses on issues like that – people will not give the show it’s full due. Chances are the readers will come away with the idea that Aoi Hana is a good show within the yuri genre, much like someone might say that Cross Game’s Aoba is a good baseball player, for a girl. So I wanted to say that Aoi Hana has a great story (period) featuring great characters that feel like real people with real problems (period) and is another example of how few studios can match J.C. Staff when it’s working to it’s full potential (period).

Best Villain


Winner: Sedna from Umi Monogatari

Going into Umi Monogatari, I had no reason to expect anything from the title, it was based on a line of pachinko machines afterall. And it was this lack of preconceived notions that allowed me to enjoy the show for what it did have to offer. So now that I’m mentioning it in places like this, I worry that I’ve poisoned the well for potential viewers because now these viewers will be watching the show and expect it to perform like a Bakemonogatari or Tokyo Magnitude 8.0.

It’s not that type of show, so even though I love Sedna as a villain – if one goes looking for the next Demon King (from last season’s winner, Sengoku Basara), they will be disappointed.

Most in Need of a Sequel


Winner: Bakemonogatari

Runner-up: Spice and Wolf

Both shows need a sequel as quickly as possible. The only thing that comforts me about Bakemonogatari is that Shaft seems to know that striking while the iron’s hot is a good idea. In the case of Spice and Wolf, the company that did this season of it, Brain’s Base, doesn’t do many series and they’re also doing Natsume Yuujinchou and I’m worried one will interfere with the other which would be horrible since both are fabulous shows.

That’s it for part 2, the next part is the VMA awards.

4 thoughts on “Top Picks – Summer 2009 Anime, Part 2: Genre and Misfit Awards”

  1. I’m glad you found it cool, I admit, I was a little worried you might get mad for me copying your format. But it’s such a good format…

    It’s seems that Baseball Playing Girls for you is what Sora no Manimani was for me. ^_^


  2. “Brain’s Base, doesn’t do many series and they’re also doing Natsume Yuujinchou and I’m worried one will interfere with the other which would be horrible since both are fabulous shows.”

    Am I to take from this sentence that there is going to be a third season of Natsume?


  3. I actually had a blog collective in mind involving you Steel, but as of now I am swamped with other things to go into it in-depth. If you are further interested in the idea, GET TWITTER OR DROP ME AN EMAIL KTHX.


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