Seen all Rating Comment
Wolf's Rain (TV) Very good With some of my favorite art in anime, this title is probably the most accessible and female audience friendly of the apocalyptic anime.
Monster (TV) Excellent With few other notable options in anime, Monster is an often disturbing, sometimes touching, and always tense must-see for fans of the mystery/suspense genre.
Paprika (movie) Decent With a handful of rather stunning scenes, fans of psychadelic imagery will like this one; though not a terrible lot to offer everyone else.
Noein - to your other self (TV) Good Very good, if not exactly cutting edge, alternate universe story with some beautiful animation. Unfortunately, some not-so-great character designs admittedly knock it down a peg or two.
Vampire Wars (OAV) Bad Very few Vampires-in-Space stories end up working. This isn't one of them.
Dead Leaves (OAV) Awful Useless collection of toilet humor, stale sex jokes and uninspired violence.
Fullmetal Alchemist (TV) Excellent Upon reading the description of this series, you'd probably think this is just another fighting anime. You'd think wrong. This is a deep, sometimes profound work that defies categorization. Technically it's probably action/adventure, but it's also a modern fantasy about an epic three-way conflict between good and evil scientist-magicians and their creations; a cautionary sci-fi/horror hybrid about the cost when mankind overreaches itself, and under the drama category a moving paean to fraternal love. Oh yeah - and the alchemal battles are extremely cool. P.S. - gals, don't let the fact that it's technically shounen turn you off. This is a perfect example of the dangers of labeling.
Rurouni Kenshin: Trust & Betrayal (OAV) Masterpiece Two warnings - This is not the Kenshin television series and should not be watched by minors, and it's so stunningly good that it might ruin the lighter series for you if you watch it first. Any adult who can take the violence should watch this one, either after season 2 or immediately if you don't intend to watch Rurouni Kenshin.
Tsubasa: RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE (TV) Good Tsubasa is a mixed bag, unfortunately sometimes dragging out the filler and slow stretches of the manga, and somewhat downplaying it's strengths, but is still worth watching due to Kurogane's backstory and the story's unconventional deconstruction of the traditional nuclear family - as well as the necessity of watching it to build up the emotional gutpunch of the arcs covered in the OVA's which will follow.
(The) Twelve Kingdoms (TV) Masterpiece Too many recap episodes and it's frustrating that a third season that would probably wrap things up doesn't seem to be in the making, but this is still the ultimate fantasy anime series so far. This is the one for Tolkien and Lewis fans to try.
Ouran High School Host Club (TV) Excellent Tied with Fruits Basket as the best shoujo anime, although I would consider it "intermediate" as it's funnier if you've watched or read at least two or three other shoujo titles first. Notable for a great ending considering the manga isn't finished yet.
Tokyo Godfathers (movie) Very good Three Godfathers meets La Cage aux Folles. Best seen for the first time during the Christmas season.
Princess Jellyfish (TV) Excellent This story of an otaku's unlikely friendship with a crossdresser is a great choice for Fruits Basket fans who want to graduate to just slightly more mature material.
Black Jack The Movie Not really good This started off as a not-too-bad medical mystery but unfortunately got too overblown and deteriorated towards the end.
Voices of a Distant Star (OAV) Excellent This short is better than most anime ten times it's length, and is a must-have for any collection of drama anime.
Samurai 7 (TV) Good This series had alot to live up to, being based on one of the greatest movies of all time. Some of the secondary character designs and the bandits-as-cyborgs attempt at novelty took me out of the story a bit, but on the whole it was well worth watching.
Mirage of Blaze (TV) Decent This series had a fascinating premise that was right up my alley. Unfortunately, the relationship between the two main characters is so twisted and disturbing that I couldn't get into rooting for them to end up together, which was of course the heart of the story.
X OAV Bad This OAV, also known as Episode 0 of X TV, spoils quite a bit of the series by giving away too much of what is going to happen. My advice is to skip it.
Submarine 707R (OAV) Not really good This naval actioner has several problems. It's predictable (not that that's always bad in itself), the villain's motives are rather hazy, and most of all there's no real resolution - probably to leave things wide open for sequels. Still, the scenes of the captain's wife and daughter waiting at home are a touching hint at what military families go through, and if the bits with the stereotypical obnoxious Americans found in so many military-oriented anime won't grate too much, it might not be a bad anime to watch with a dad or granddad who served.
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex: Solid State Society (movie) Very good This movie lives up to the standards of the series, with a good storyline and some genuinely tense moments.
Crest of the Stars (TV) Excellent This is the series for fans of space operas like Star Trek, Babylon 5 and Farscape to try. If you like it, don't miss the sequels, Banner of the Stars and Banner of the Stars II.
Akira (movie) Good This is one of those anime that most fans consider it necessary to eventually see to be considered anime literate. With the exception of the character faces the art really holds up, with some of the best destruction sequences I've seen in anime. The frightening story is also better than I expected.
Record of Lodoss War (OAV) Decent This is basically a typical Dungeons & Dragons adventure on film. Good for a weekend rental if this is your genre, but I wouldn't necessarily buy because subsequent fantasy anime have surpassed it.
Only Yesterday (movie) Good This is a good anime for women to start off with. For those in the U.S. I would best compare it to a typical Hallmark Hall of Fame entry.
Blood: The Last Vampire (movie) Decent This had the makings of a classic vampire movie, with excellent production values. Unfortunately, it needed another 20 minutes or so to achieve greatness, as we were basically dropped into the situation with very little background. Still, not bad and worth watching in October if it happens to be on TV as Halloween nears.
Kai Doh Maru (OAV) Decent This could have been a really, really great historical drama. I loved the art, and the characters were interesting. Unfortunately, the disjointed plot made it too hard to follow, at least for me, and I only had a vague idea of what was going on at some points. I'm admittedly not at all familiar with the Heian era, but a decent historical movie should be followable for those not familiar with the subject matter.
(The) Gokusen (TV) Bad This could have been a decent, if routine, series for teens and their families about a good teacher whipping a class into shape. But the fact that we're supposed to sympathise with the rather delinquent kids just because there are worse elements out there and the fact that the teacher's crime family are presented as having hearts of gold just didn't fly with me. And then there was the talking dog...
MD Geist (OAV) Worst ever This anime seems to have deliberately tossed together the worst fantasies of young men with big issues, with ultraviolence and a resident dumb bimbo to boot. Arguably the most meanspirited and misogynistic anime I've ever seen.
xxxHOLiC (TV) Very good The story's unconventional love triange means that it might not be everyone's cup of tea, but it's otherwise a great choice for fans of supernatural and slice of life stories. The dub job is phenomenal.
Black Lagoon: The Second Barrage (TV) Very good The stakes are raised for the characters, and more than ever this one isn't for the kids, starting off with a disturbing arc which will - or at least should - haunt you for some time afterwards. But for adults it continues to be one of the best action anime out there. Rock's morality continues to keep the series from becoming too bleak.
(Le) Portrait de Petite Cossette (OAV) Good The lolicon element knocked a few points off for me, but the art and atmosphere were just right. A good ghost story.
Basilisk (TV) Decent The last few episodes were quite good and the art was excellent throughout, but unfortunately the first half of Basilisk played too much like a video game and contained some rather unpleasant character designs. That being said, I admittedly am not among the target audience. Young men will likely appreciate the bodice-ripping, ninja-skill-of-the-week and who's-next-to-die format of most of the series alot more.
Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust (movie) Excellent The end of the Meir/Charlotte subplot was a bit too much for me. That being said, since Magnetic Rose (Memories) is sadly only the first segment of a trilogy, this is still my suggestion for something to pull out around Halloween or any other time you feel like a horror title. A solid, more or less traditional (in spite of Left Hand and the future setting) entry with some great animation. Most vampire fans will like if not love it.
Durarara!! (TV) Very good Surprisingly addictive with a quirky, generally likeable cast in spite of the fact that most of them are quite bluntly gang members.
Memories (movie) Very good Stink Bomb was mildly amusing, and Cannon Fodder didn't do much for me. The reason to see this one is the first segment, Magnetic Rose, which is the greatest horror anime I've ever seen.
Emma: A Victorian Romance Second Act (TV) Excellent Starting off with a textbook recap episode, Second Act builds upon the first half of Emma cresendoing into a delightful traditional ending. The perfect low-key series for a quiet day of anime viewing.
Inuyasha (TV) Good Sometimes forced comic relief and the fact that it lasted far too long kept this from being one of the truly great fantasy titles, but it's still worth seeing if you can handle the time commitment.
Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro (movie) Decent Some light fun if you have some time to kill. The highlight is probably the European-style architecture.
Samurai Champloo (TV) So-so Some great fight scenes and a handful of funny moments. Mugen's amorality, considering he is one of the nominal heroes of the series, disturbed me a bit - especially since all too many young men are likely to find him appealing. The hip hop undertones will either be a drawing point or turn you off depending on your background.
Shadow Skill 2 (OAV 2) Weak See Shadow Skill review.
Virus Buster Serge (TV) Weak Sci-fi nonsense with some laughable character designs that look like action figures.
Vampire Knight Guilty (TV) Very good Ramps up everything that was good about the first limited series - bringing the Yuki/Kaname/Zero triangle to a climax, the story of Zero and his twin Ichiru to a heartbreaking conclusion, introducing a major subplot for Shiki which drives much of the action, showing the kick-butt side of Kaien Cross which had only been hinted at so far, and beginning a suprisingly touching friendship between Yuki and Aido. Fans will be pleased - but those not reading the manga, as is the case with many manga-based anime, should brace themselves to be left with alot of loose ends if the rest of the story is not eventually animated.
Eiken (OAV) Worst ever Quite possibly the most insipid thing I've ever seen. What can you say about a show consisting almost completely of sick breast "jokes"?
Castle in the Sky (movie) Excellent Quite possibly the best age-crossover anime, a perfect choice for preteens/young teens and their late teen/adult relatives to watch together. If you like Disney animated movies, this is the anime for you.
Fruits Basket (TV) Excellent Quite frankly, I picked this up because I wanted something to lighten my collection up, and this sounded like the only well-regarded title that didn't sound like it was too fanservice heavy and had enough serious undertones to add some depth. It has become one of my favorites. This is the perfect anime for a soap opera fan to start off with, with plenty of characters to get attached to and laugh and cry with. My only complaint, like many others who love the series, is that after continuing with the manga I can't help but think how sad it is that only roughly 1/3 of the story was animated.
Ghost in the Shell (movie) Very good Quite a bit of nudity, and if that bothers you knock off a few rating points - but if you can get past that, almost as well written as the series and quite well animated indeed.
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG (TV) Very good Pretty much the same review as 1st GIG.
Last Exile (TV) Excellent Plucky orphans. The good-guy military man with one mission to go before getting promoted out of the war zone. The mysterious space pirate and his motley crew. The rival who isn't nearly as bad as he seems and the slave who's a more remarkable human being than his master. The main characters of Last Exile are all cliches, and we know it. But somehow they grow on you, and by the time things build up to the last four episodes, it's impossible not to care about what happens to them after following their journey. It's also one of the great crossover titles. With aerial combat sequences for the guys and plenty of relationships for the gals (bring tissues near the end if you're the weepy type) , it's a perfect choice for mixed viewership.
(The) Vision of Escaflowne (TV) Very good One ranking off for some cheesiness regarding the primary villain near the end, but other than that quite possibly the ultimate crossover title, with plenty of mecha battles for the guys, a traditional love triangle for the girls, and a detailed fantasy world for both.
Desert Punk (TV) Bad One or two amusing moments, but overall the repugnant titular character leaves you feeling scuzzy.
Trigun (TV) Good One of those series that everyone should try once and that alot of young men in particular should love. Wacky humor, crazy gunfights, and tragedy and moral dilemmas near the end.
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex (TV) Very good One of the more intelligently written series out there for older viewers. Designed for the guys, but women who think they can get over their annoyance at the Major's oft-skimpy clothing should give this a try too.
Mushi-Shi (TV) Masterpiece On the surface a fantasy about the natural world, but actually a study of the best in human nature. A beautiful work, both visually and emotionally - and by far the best anime anthology I've watched so far.
Shaman King (TV) Not really good Nothing new under the sun, and some upsetting racial stereotypes.
Banner of the Stars (TV) Excellent Not much to say but that this is more of the same we got in Crest of the Stars.
Banner of the Stars II (TV) Excellent Not much to say but that this is more of the same we got in Crest of the Stars.
Descendants of Darkness (TV) Good Not bad for what it is, namely a shounen-ai piece with very likeable leads and a decent love-to-hate him villian. Centers much more on emotion than logic, so add or negate probable rankings for yourself appropriately depending on your tastes. You'll probably want to stick with the sub for this, as I felt the two leads were fine but the rest of the dub cast ranged from okay to occasionally cringeworthy.
Shinesman (OAV) Decent Not a bad parody - and one you can actually watch with older kids in the room to boot. I get a feeling it could have been even funnier if it had actually extended into a limited series.
Eureka Seven (TV) Good Not a bad mecha series. The pseudo-hippie culture won't be for everyone (although the surfing mechs aren't as corny as they sound and are rather visually interesting), but the primary love story is actually quite good.
Spirited Away (movie) Decent Loved the first half hour or so involving Chihiro's entry into the spirit world, but the movie's imagery became grotesque a little too regularly for me to want to sit through it on a regular basis.
Honey and Clover (TV) Excellent Just misses out on masterpiece status due to some slight problems with the two female leads, but its fairly accurate depiction of college life, warm tone, and mix of comedy and drama make it a must-see for anyone who's been through at least one year of college.
Rurouni Kenshin: The Motion Picture Decent Just about as good as an average episode of the Kenshin series.
Fantastic Children (TV) Excellent It is pretty much only the sometimes jarring character designs that keeps this sci-fi tale of forgiveness, redemption and love that transcends time from reaching masterpiece level. One of the most emotionally beautiful stories I've seen in an anime, backed by an equally beautiful, haunting soundtrack. Stick with sub instead of dub for this one.
Grave of the Fireflies (movie) Masterpiece In spite of the low rewatch value due to the notorious subject matter, this belongs in every anime collection.
Cowboy Bebop (TV) Good In spite of the fact that this takes place in space, it's probably closer to something like Pulp Fiction or The Sopranos than any sci fi. I ultimately couldn't get attached enough to the characters (most of whom aren't especially good people) for it to be a favorite of mine, but it does have some of the best stand-alone episodes in anime and a heck of an ending. Although Spike has a significant female fanbase, this one undeniably leans towards the guys, who will eat the action sequences (and Faye's cleavage shots) up.
Toward the Terra (TV) Excellent In spite of character designs which show their age and an epilogue which some may feel dilutes the power of what has come before, Toward the Terra is a biting study of genocide which will have broad appeal to bishounen fangirls and those who love tearjerkers, as well as fans of George Orwell's novels and the X-Men franchise and has not received the audience which it deserves, perhaps in part due to the lack of a dub on the Region 1 DVD release.
Tokko (TV) Not really good In spite of a few episodes where it seems things might be picking up, this is at heart a rather generic sci-fi/horror title with a groan-worthy ending.
Ergo Proxy (TV) Very good In spite of a few elements that didn't work, this will generally hit the spot if your sci-fi tastes lean more towards Blade Runner than Star Trek and company. Some absolutely gorgeous animation.
Black Lagoon (TV) Very good If you're looking for a rollercoaster shoot-em-up, you're not going to get much better than this. Amazing graphics and very good dub. Knock a few points off if leaving political correctness at the door isn't you or constant foul language makes you cringe; add a few if girls-with-guns is your niche.
Trinity Blood (TV) Very good If you like vampire actioners, you'll probably like this one. Great animation, and more girl-friendly than most entries in the genre. Unfortunately, the ending falls apart to some extent - which made me waver between a good and very good rating. I averaged up to very good out of consideration for the author's untimely and tragic death before the anime was completed and the fact that we don't know what might have happened had he lived.
Emma: A Victorian Romance (TV) Excellent If the typical shounen series is the equivalent of a summer blockbuster, this is the equivalent of a good Masterpiece Theatre entry, perfect for disabusing people with the impression that anime consists only of mecha and fanservice. For romance fans in general and fans of Victorian England and Jane Austinish novels in particular.
Vandread (TV) Good I turned out liking this series more than I expected to. In spite of the ridiculously skimpy fanservice-friendly clothes that some of the female characters wear and the subtle-as-a-sledgehamer "combining" metaphor it has some surprisingly funny, sweet and even moving moments.
Appleseed (movie) Good I thought this was pretty good for a typical sci-fi actioner. Fairly interesting characters and decent visuals.
Neon Genesis Evangelion (TV) So-so I think it's one of those anime people either love or hate. As it can get a little crude at times it's definitely more for the guys, and it was a little too pretentious for me.
Harlock Saga (OAV) Awful I rented this because I thought I might like it as a fan of Wagner's Ring. Unfortunately, I thought it was quite dull - and an implied message about the forgiveability of rape clinched it as horrible for me.
Tactics (TV) Decent I really wanted to like this one, because I'm a sucker for supernatural stories, but the episodes were just too hit-or-miss for me to rank it higher. A handful of episodes were rather good, but it just wasn't consistent as a whole.
Kino's Journey (TV) Excellent I had read all the hype about how this was one of the better anime for older viewers, but was sceptical when I read that Kino's sidekick is a talking motorcycle. I am so glad that I overcame that scepticism, because this was the most mentally stimulating anime I've seen so far. Almost a masterpiece.
Porco Rosso (movie) Weak I can't put my finger on what I didn't like about it, but I tried it twice and didn't really care for it.
My Neighbor Totoro (movie) Excellent Hands down the best young children's anime I've ever seen. I defaulted to Excellent and would knock it up to masterpiece for kids and down to very good for adults. I love the relationship the girls have with their father, who is trying to give them as normal a life as possible under trying circumstances and is one of those wonderful, rare adults who still has the magic of his inner child with him - as well as the fact that the movie doesn't insult children with gravely ill parents by offering the mother a miracle cure at the end.
Witch Hunter Robin (TV) So-so Had potential to be a Goth classic, but the lack of development of the supporting cast makes it a bit hard to get completely emotionally invested once the story becomes linear rather than focusing on stand-alone episodes.
.hack//Legend of the Twilight (TV) So-so Hack Lite. If you liked The World but not the grimness of SIGN's storyline, this is for you. If you liked SIGN's maturity, the fact that this largely unrelated sequel is kiddified will irritate you greatly.
Steamboy (movie) Good Gorgeous animation, but the story fell apart at the end.
Ghost Hunt (TV) Very good Fruits Basket meets Most Haunted, with an almost 50/50 mix of shoujo slice of life and horror. The cast grows on you, the final cases are genuinely scary, and it's a pretty good choice for a watch during the Halloween season.
Strait Jacket (OAV) Decent For the gorefest category this isn't half bad, with characters engaging enough that you want to see how things play out for them.
Rave Master (TV) Decent Fairly fun shounen series. A good display of typical shounen elements, though not notable enough to truly grab those outside the genre's home demographic.
Jin-Roh - The Wolf Brigade (movie) Decent Extremely realistic and fluid animation, but the story was a bit disjointed, and although I got the basic idea it was slightly hard to follow..
Texhnolyze (TV) Decent Excellent production value, but alot of viewers might feel that the story is too deliberately vague.
She and Her Cat (OAV) Good Exactly what it says - a short, sweet reflection by a cat about his female human owner. Available as an extra on the Voices from a Distant Star DVD, which with it has nothing in common except it's creator.
Hellsing (TV) Very good Every anime doesn't have to be a deep, lifechanging masterpiece, and this is a good title for adults who want some mindless fun. There was one episode where the language was a little too crude for me (Hellsing admittedly leans more towards the guys), but other than that I enjoyed this one. Particularly devout Catholics might be upset that the Catholic church doesn't come off too well, but if you were able to handle, for instance, the treatment of Opus Dei in "The Da Vinci Code", you can handle this.
Psychic Wars (OAV) Bad Essentially the anime equivalent of a bad 1950's sci-fi clunker - and not in the so-bad-it's-good Ed Wood kind of way.
Honey and Clover II (TV) Masterpiece Eliminating the problems with the depictions of Hagu and Ayume, magnifying the series' strengths and with an unforgettable final scene, Honey and Clover becomes a Josei essential as it ends.
Shadow Skill (OAV) Weak Didn't really think much of this one. The plot was sketchy, the supernatural elements of the Shadow Skill technique weren't explained, and the Bad Guys weren't very formidable - I never felt the heroes were ever in real trouble for one minute.
MD Geist II - Death Force (OAV) Worst ever Did absolutely nothing to change my mind about the first OAV.
Infinite Ryvius (TV) Decent Comparisons to Lord of the Flies made me give this one a shot. Unfortunately, in my mind it ultimately couldn't decide if it wanted to be a teen drama or political allegory. The final episode largely diluted the power of the series, and the fact that alot of the kids turned out to have had severe psychological problems even before their crisis took away alot of the point of the story.
Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea (movie) Good Charming movie for the little ones. Bump up one rating for little kids.
Tsubasa RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE the Movie: The Princess in the Birdcage Kingdom So-so Captures the characters and scenery well visually, but barely touches the real appeal of Tsubasa, which is the relationships between the main characters.
Mirage of Blaze: Rebels of the River Edge (OAV) Decent Basically, more of what you liked if you enjoyed the series and nothing that will change your mind if you didn't.
Cowboy Bebop: The Movie So-so Basically a very long stand-alone episode of the series. Action fans will be in heaven; everyone else might find the story a bit weak when all is said and done.
Trigun: Badlands Rumble (movie) Decent Basically a nostalgiafest for fans of the original series, presented as a one-shot set during an undefined period in the lighter first half before everything went wrong for the gang. Each fan will have to make up their own mind about whether the bitter English VA dispute, which might be a source of controversy for some, will affect their attitude towards the movie. Echoes the original's mix of action, a few laughs, and a few sincere moments.
Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations (OAV) Excellent Arguably CLAMP's best work, Tsubasa's Acid Tokyo art is the culmination of the relationships between all the main characters and a dark but beautiful study of different kinds of love - and what these people who have truly become a family are willing to do for eachother.
Vandread: The Second Stage (TV) Good Anyone who liked the first season will like this even more. The light moments remain, but the crew's underlying fight against the Harvesters gives some depth. Although it's somewhat predictable, that isn't always bad in itself, and there are one or two surprises to keep things from getting too stale. Final analysis - it's a sci-fi sex comedy for the guys that also won't offend most of the gals.
Macross Plus (OAV) Very good An excellent sci-fi OAV. The only complaint is that we don't get an epilogue showing the fallout from what has occured, and rape victims and their families should be warned that an attempted rapist is shown in a sympathetic light (the fact that blackouts and genetics are blamed might not be seen as an acceptable excuse for people and their families who have actually been through this)- although the situation is handled alot less offensively than in some other anime and the seriousness of the situation is made perfectly clear and is a major point of the story.
InuYasha the Movie 3: Swords of an Honorable Ruler Decent An entertaining flashback that gives the background of the relationship between Inuyasha and Sesshomorou. As good as some of the better episodes of the series.
X (TV) Excellent An apocalyptic story for the girls that will also appeal to guys who won't be bothered by the fact that some of the main characters are gay. If you want a good angstfest, look no further. The series isn't perfect - in particular excessive use of flashbacks sometimes kills momentum - but the strengths outweigh the weaknesses and you'll get hooked by the relationships between the various characters. I would best compare the tone to Stephen King's "The Stand", and fans of the Tokyo Babylon manga won't want to miss this one, as Subaru Sumeragi plays an important role.
Howl's Moving Castle (movie) Very good An absolutely delightful family film that adults as well as kids should enjoy.
Fullmetal Alchemist: The Movie - Conqueror of Shamballa Good Although this movie doesn't achieve the greatness of the series, it does have a few good moments - and the animation is gorgeous.
(Le) Chevalier D'Eon (TV) Masterpiece Alexandre Dumas meets George Romero - in the best possible way. Exquisite artwork, and the fact that the ending is so powerful in spite of some major historical tweaking is a testament to how great it really is.
Princess Mononoke (movie) Excellent Absolutely stunning art, and the story is quite good too. One of the best anime movies.
Soul Eater (TV) Good A visually interesting shounen action title with some rather good moments and quirky characters, Soul Eater is brought down a little by an ending which is a bit of a cop-out.
Peacemaker (TV) Very good A very good quasi-historical anime, with a likeable cast and a strong ending. Kenshin fans will enjoy this different take on some of the Kenshin characters.
xxxHOLiC the Movie: A Midsummer Night's Dream Very good A very fun first look at xxxHOLiC in animated form, with the highlight being a great English dub cast.
Vampire Knight (TV) Good A vampire series those inclined towards soap operas should try out. Although the heroine is not believable as an enforcer (although this may have been deliberate to leave room for character development), the story begins to get us to care about what happens to the characters.
(The) Girl Who Leapt Through Time (movie) Masterpiece A truly magnificent movie combining sci-fi elements with a neat twist near the end and a teen drama which is the most accurate depiction of late teen life I've seen so far. A must-have for any collection.
FLCL (OAV) Weak A thinly-veiled psychadelic parable about a teenage boy's sexual awakening. Did little for me, but if that sounds like your cup of tea, go for it.
Wolf's Rain (OAV) Excellent A stunning study in tragedy that is very hard to forget once watched.
Shigofumi - Letters from the Departed (TV) Good A study of the question "If you could say one thing to someone after you passed away, what would it be, and to whom?", which is increasingly dominated by a backstory for the protagonist. As with other anthologies, some of the stories are better than others, with some disturbing and others quite touching.
Escaflowne: The Movie Decent A short retelling of the series in an alternate universe. Not nearly as good as the series, but not as bad as those who are disappointed because it's not a classic would have you believe either.
Black Magic M-66 (OAV) Weak A run of the mill robot-runs-amuk story with cardboard characters. Not much to see here.
S-CRY-ed (TV) Weak A rather average fighting anime.
Perfect Blue (movie) Very good A psychological suspense piece that's just as good as any similar live action work you'll see.
(The) Weathering Continent (movie) Good A neat little supernatural adventure. Short, sweet and to the point. It's nice to see a story where kindness and respect are rewarded.
Ninja Scroll (TV) Decent A movie for the blood-and-busts crowd. Firmly for the guys, but quite a few women should find it watchable because of the genuinely touching relationship between the two likeable leads.
Requiem from the Darkness (TV) Decent A horror anthology which might appeal to the Tales from the Crypt/Tales from the Darkside crowd. Like the similar Hell Girl, it can be a bit mean spirited, but the morality of the humane protagonist lessens the bleakness.
Summer Wars (movie) Very good A heartwarming family drama by way of cyberspace adventure. Although the point is not belaboured, some viewers may be put off that the closest thing to a villain in the story is the U.S. military.
Scrapped Princess (TV) Very good A good magical girl/mecha hybrid, with very likeable characters. Similar feel to Escaflowne, but with more emphasis on familial relationships than romance.
Hell Girl (TV) Good A good choice for those who like horror anthologies with a few regular characters. A consistent format with just enough twists, some including some disturbing jolts right before the end credits, to keep you watching - along with some quite good character development for the title character in the last few episodes.
Read or Die (OAV) Good A good anime to start James Bond fans on.
Tsubasa: Spring Thunder (OAV) Good A good animated version of Tsubasa's Nihon Arc - but be prepared to be disappointed that the Infinity Arc and most of the Celes Arc have been skipped if you're familiar with the manga - and confused and possibly even upset if you're not, as at this point everything is essential and you've missed some very important and dramatic events and backstory for one of the main characters.
Kiki's Delivery Service (movie) Very good A fine bridge between Totoro and the Studio Ghibli movies for slightly older children.
X (movie) Weak A few pretty destruction scenes, but the combination of large cast and short time takes away alot of the impact considering we don't get to know the cast well enough to care about who's getting bumped off - which is why the tv series was necessary and trying to animate the story in movie form probably wasn't a good idea in the first place.
Chrono Crusade (TV) So-so A few good moments, but all in all a rather average actioner. Some of the religious themes and imagery might offend some Christians, especially Catholics.
.hack//SIGN (TV) Excellent A fantasy for those leaning more towards drama than action. Most people who dislike this series went in with false expectations, but if you go in knowing that it's more about the real-life people sitting at their computers offscreen rather than their gaming personas, it might just become a quiet favorite if you're open to the fact that this is relationship-driven rather than all-swordfighting-all-the-time.
Ten Tokyo Warriors (OAV) Weak A dull, routine supernatural fighting anime. Others have done it much better.
Gunslinger Girl (TV) Very good A disturbing study of brainwashing. Strong characters, and anyone who's ever been to Italy will appreciate the care taken with the scenery.
Now and Then, Here and There (TV) Excellent A cross between Grave of the Fireflies and Schindler's List with a Sci Fi twist. More replay value than Grave of the Fireflies, perhaps because we do get a few glimmers of hope.
Blood+ (TV) Very good A complex vampire mythology and the relationships between the heroine and her family members make this worth watching, although somewhat weak supporting villains and fight scenes that aren't always what they could be keep it from becoming a true classic.
Death Note (TV) Very good A classic noirish battle of wits suspense title. Very fun if occasionally disturbing to watch.
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (movie) Excellent A bridge between the Ghibli films for children and the mature Princess Mononoke. Nausicaa is perhaps anime's greatest heroine.
5 Centimeters Per Second (movie) Masterpiece A beautiful work focusing on the sad truth that most of us slowly drift apart from the friends who meant the world to us in high school after graduation - and more specifically usually don't end up married to the first people we fall in love with. Quite possibly the most beautifully drawn anime I've ever seen.
.hack//Intermezzo (OAV) Good A backstory on major character Mimiru's days as a newbie in The World. Think of it as an after-dinner mint to SIGN's main course.
Passage of the Stars - Birth (special) Good A background story following Lafiel's parents on the day her father asked her mother to provide genetic material for his child - which we know from Crest of the Stars is Abh talk for a profession of love. An interesting change of perspective from always following Lafiel and Jinto. An extra at the end of Banner of the Stars II.
Gundress (movie) Not really good A babes-and-mechs movie for the guys trying to disguise itself as a girl buddy movie. Cliched characters, and nothing special.
Witchblade (TV) Decent A babefest for the guys which is given unexpected weight by a heartbreaking tale about the fierceness of maternal love, biological or otherwise.
Inuyasha the Movie 4: Fire on the Mystic Island Decent A stand-alone movie. Completist will want to see it; for everyone else it's a not too bad way to kill some time if you aren't burned out on the series but doesn't contribute anything to the series proper.
Kakurenbo - Hide & Seek (movie) So-so Interesting concept, but not executed well. And I dont think the CGI was that good.
Haibane Renmei (TV) Masterpiece I absolutely love this series, from the characters to the story to the detailed European-style town it takes place in. Alot of symbolism, but nothing anyone with a religious upbringing shouldn't be able to figure out.
Inuyasha the Movie 2: The Castle Beyond the Looking Glass Not really good
Inuyasha the Movie: Affections Touching Across Time Decent
Metropolis (movie) Decent
Millennium Actress (movie) Very good
Paranoia Agent (TV) So-so
Pom Poko (movie) Very good
Whisper of the Heart (movie) Very good
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