This post marks the 500th post I’ve written for The Null Set. Stack that milestone on top of the other ones that I never thought I would actually accomplish. I had wanted to have my fifth year anniversary post last month be my 500th post for the symmetry of it but I didn’t get this look back at the anime of 2012 done in time. 😦
Oh well, this post is almost as good because there is nothing I spend more time on here then these yearly looks back at the anime series that aired.
Step three for awesome anime – after creating memorable characters and giving them a worthy stage – is to use every part of the production process to bring-out/enhance the positive aspects of the anime and hide the negative aspects. Getting the right seiyuu can be the difference between a character being a success or failure. Inappropriate music can ruin the climax of a series and nothing can make a whole anime series fail as assuredly as poor animation quality. In the right hands, a small budget can be overcome through creating the right animation style. Stellar OP/ED with it’s combination of music and animation can build excitement and anticipation for the anime and ensure viewers come back next week.
There’s other parts to an anime’s production – like script writing, cinematography, sound editing, etc. – that won’t gets awards here because I’m not knowledgeable enough in these areas to put any confidence in picking winners. Which is why I call this set of awards the Voice, Music, and Audio awards. I’m hoping, yet again, next year I’ll be able to include a few more areas of the production to these awards.
I really should think of a better name then “misfit” for this group of awards because the word makes me think of the Isle of Misfit Toys from the Rudolph Christmas special which then gets me to mentally add, “I’d like to be a … a dentist!”, and I start wondering again why would anyone want to be a dentist. The two most likely scenarios I can think of is, one, it’s easier to become a dentist then it is a doctor or, two, the person in question likes putting their hands in people’s mouths. If the internet has taught me anything it’s that number 2 is probably the more likely explanation.
I apologize if you were eating something while reading this and now you’re not hungry. It does, though, show why I want to rename this section of awards.
Anyways, this group of categories is a bit of a hodge-podge. Several of my favorite awards appear in this section like Best Show No One Saw. If you have a suggestion for an award I should add feel free to leave a comment.
One of the reasons that I think meta humor is as funny as it can be is because the creators are acknowledging the presence of the audience and of their intelligence when they use it. A non-anime example of the power of meta humor is the excellent book Redshirts by John Scalzi. He starts with the observation about the short lifespan of the bit part security officers (the Redshirts) from Star Trek and builds a funny and surprising deep novel. Speaking of Star Trek, as I’m writing this there’s speculation that the new villain in the second Star Trek movie will be a red shirt. I don’t see the creators tapping into that bit of meta humor but if they do, it would be awesome.
There are other ways to acknowledge the audience, however.
Last year was the first time I participated in the Secret Santa Project run by Reverse Thieves and the experience was one of my favorite memories as an anime fan for 2011. For those unfamiliar with the SSP, this link can provide more information. My secret Santa – who I now know was draggle from Draggle’s Anime Blog – had to chose three series, OVAs, movies that I might like but haven’t seen and might never watch otherwise. Draggle picked Noein, Figure 17, and Simoun. I was only required to watch and write up a review to one of these series and I chose Noein based on the staff involved. My review is here but the tl;dr version is that Noein was Awesome!. I decided to watch the other two series but only had the chance to get to Figure 17 (pretty awesome itself, review) before Christmas came; so, I promised myself that I’d get to the third series, Simoun, before next Christmas.
Months passed and I was in no hurry to get back to Simoun because there was no longer a deadline and I always work best with a deadline.
That is, until, I decided that I needed a break from trying to wrangle a couple stubborn blog posts into shape to post and looked at my backlog to see Simoun sitting there, waiting. Turns out that was the right decision to make but for the wrong reasons.
Here we are, I’m almost sad to finish this look at the spring season up because it’s the last thing to do before switching gears and focusing on the summer season. I’ve cushioned the blow a bit by putting two of the titles that made my top six into the rewatch pile to watch with my sister. It’s been fun to rewatch those two series knowing how they both turn out and knowing I’ll enjoy the ride.
Okay, enough with the flapping of gums, let’s move on to number six – a series that had many different names 🙂 :