My Favorite Anime Things (2019 Edition)

Fruits Basket remake so heartfelt and pretty
A sad life transformed by a black-and-white kitty
Vikings and vengeance and princes and kings
These are a few of my favorite things

Saitama’s awesome but he is no gamer
Miku’s best girl, ain’t that a no-brainer?
Manga with Vader, Leia, and X-Wings
These are a few of my favorite things

When Muzan bites
When Conny dies
When I’m feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad

Kaguya blushes and Chika loves dancing
Rascal is good for some tears and romancing
Orphans from Grace Field escape on a string
These are a few of my favorite things

In episode 19, Tanjirou was epic
Chihaya’s back and she’s ever angelic
Alita is killing it on the big screen
These are a few of my favorite things

When Eri cries
When Magase hacks
When I’m screaming mad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad

References

Verse 1

Line 1: The first season of a remake of Fruits Basket aired this year to critical and popular acclaim. Based on the manga by Natsuki Takaya, this version featured more input by the mangaka and replaces the older series, which was the subject of mixed feelings from manga fans. Part two will premiere in 2020. You can currently stream season one on Crunchyroll. We also wrote a number of articles about the remake.

Line 2: Haru is a stray cat that is adopted by writer Subaru Mikazuki in the anime, My Roommate is a Cat. Introverted by nature to the point of being a shut-in, and having lost both of his parents years earlier, Subaru has no idea how to care for a cat. Meanwhile, Haru has also led a difficult life and finds Subaru hard to deal with. However, they learn to mutually care for each other and help one another grow. You can currently stream this anime on Crunchyroll.

Line 3: Set against the backdrop of the Viking invasion of England near the turn of the 2nd millennium, Vinland Saga is a tale about Thorfinn, who seeks revenge after a violent attack that changes his and his family’s life. As he grows and becomes part of the Viking incursion, Thorfinn also becomes involved with Canute, a Viking prince. Vinland Saga is streaming on Amazon Prime.

Verse 2

Line 1: One Punch Man and its super-powered up hero, Saitama, returned this year in a much-anticipated season two. Early in the season, he becomes friends with King, a highly-ranked hero but one who is actually fraudulent. Still, the two get along well and play video games frequently—King always wins against Saitama, who is a terrible gamer. Season two of One Punch Man can be streamed on Hulu.

Line 2: Perhaps the best harem of series of the year was The Quintessential Quintuplets, which features the cantankerous Futaro, who is harangued into tutoring the less-than-academically-stellar Nakano sisters. Miku is the first of the five to take an active romantic interest in Futaro. Relatively quiet, Miku is also sharp-tongued, earnest, and most known for her trademark headphones. Check out all the Miku fanart that’s posted on Anime Pop Heart, and watch the series on Crunchyroll.

Line 3: The third and final volume of Star Wars: Lost Stars, and officially licensed Star Wars manga, was recently released. We reviewed the series, which you can purchase on Amazon.

Chorus 1

Line 1: Muzan is the antagonist of Demon Slayer, a vicious demon whose thirst for violence and everlasting existence leads to frequent death and tragedy. Demon Slayer can be streamed on Crunchyroll. More on Demon Slayer to follow.

Line 2: The Promised Neverland begins with a bang, as Emma and Norman discover in episode one that instead of being adopted, as inferred, the tiny and cute child, Conny, has been killed and will be served as a meal to demons. The Promised Neverland can be streamed on Crunchyroll. More on The Promised Neverland to follow.

Verse 3

Line 1: Kaguya-sama: Love is War follows two student council officers / rivals who pretend to dislike each other though the opposite is true; the blushing is frequent and heavy, including that for the title character. But the most popular character from the series is another officer not involved in the romance, the radomly hilarious Chika, whose dance has become much imitated and memed. Kaguya-sama can be streamed on Crunchyroll.

Line 2: Rascal Does Not Dream of a Dreaming Girl, the movie following up on the similarly titled Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Sempai series, was an emotional ride for the audience. The film revealed significant backstory details as it focused particularly on the mystery behind one character’s appearances and disappearance, while putting a favorite one in peril. We were so excited that we did not one, but two reviews of the film.

Line 3: As mentioned earlier, The Promised Neverland, the first season of which takes place largely at the Grace Field House, is an exhilarating and at times terrifying ride, featuring a cast of young characters who are being farmed as food. Spoilers ahead for the anime: The kids make an escape, which includes sliding down strings to cross over a large chasm in one of the most climactic scenes of the season. We blogged on the show episodically from both a manga reader’s (spoiler) perspective and that of one who hadn’t read the manga (non-spoiler). You can watch the series on Crunchyroll.

Verse 4

Line 1: Perhaps the most popular new series this year was Demon Slayer. The main character, Tanjirou, finds that his family has been viciously killed by a demon while he was away, with only his sister, Nezuko, surviving, but transformed into a demon herself. As he seeks to cure her, Tanjirou becomes part of the demon slayer corps, and in episode 19, his power emerges dramatically in a scene so beautifully animated by Ufotable and so full of emotion that it became and remains a highly-discussed moment. Our podcasters talked about it, too.

Line 2: Chihaya is the protagonist of Chihayafuru, an anime about the world of competitive karuta, a Japanese card game based on memorization and speed. The series returned with a third season six year after season two, and the genre-crossing show remained as beautiful as ever; the same could be said of its main character, who from a distance seems like an untouchable beauty (though she’s more of the absent-minded type in person). Chihayafuru can be streamed on Crunchyroll.

Line 3: After more than a decade in development hell, James Cameron’s adaptation of the Battle Angel Alita manga (titled Alita: Battle Angel for the film) hit the big screen early in 2018 with a different director at hand (Robert Rodriguez took the reigns while Cameron produced) and to mostly positive reviews from the anime community (though our review was more muted), as well as fair box office returns. Alita also kills it because, well, she slices bad guys up.

Chorus 2

Line 1: In season four of My Hero Academia, the new villain Overhaul is brought in, as well as Eri, the young girl he is victimizing and taking advantage of for his diabolical schemes. My Hero Academia can be streamed on Crunchyroll.

Line 2: Muzan may get all the attention, but the most vile villain of the year may be a woman (Minor spoilers ahead for Babylon). Magase, a mesmerizing woman at the center of a mysterious and deadly conspiracy, reveals her true colors during the midpoint of the season in one of the most horrific scenes in recent memory. Meanwhile, the show took a break after this, leaving the audience broken while waiting for new episodes to begin airing again a couple of weeks from now. You can catch up in the meantime through Amazon Prime, and read our take on that violent scene.

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