A lot of us are looking back at which series are the most memorable this year for a variety of reasons — the quality of the storytelling, originality, niche gimmicks (moé, lolita, Shōtarō-characters, A Drill That Will Pierce Through The Heavens, unnatural boob measurements, etc.), and all that other shit. HOWEVER! To me, what really makes or breaks a series in being truly memorable, it all depends on the characters. In most cases, I would probably remember a series for a lifetime based solely on the characters (or a specific character) rather than the quality of the storyline or how deep it is (of course, if it’s THAT good than it’ll probably be the other way around!). The story could be utter crap for all I care and I’d still remember it if I really like the cast and their character dynamics. In my opinion, if an anime/manga has a story/concept that’s as cliché or horrible as saving a princess who gets her butt kidnapped by an evil witch/evil giant turtle yet has some top-notched character dynamics, then it would probably rank at the top of my list of favorite anime. Likewise, if the story is built FANTASTICALLY yet the characters are flat out boring, then it wouldn’t leave as much of an impression on me despite it having an excellent plot.
Or the character could be just be an utter jackass and the series will be memorable based on how much I wanted to shove a knife down their throat and throw him/her (most likely a HIM…) into a pit of acid…
To get down to business, this post will chronicle some of the characters that has made a big impression on me this year. Based on categories ranging from good to bad to OMG I WANT TO RIP HIS EYES OUT THAT DAMN MAKOTO, the cutest to the most inspiring to THE MOST SUPERLY AWESOME BADASS THAT HAS EVER WALKED DOWN THE PATH OF ANIMU… You name it.
(I’m obviously leaving Bacanno! out of this, since honestly, I can’t choose just one notable person from its large cast of characters)
THE MOST ANIKI OF ANIKI: Kamina (Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann)
“Believe in the me that believes in you!”
A truly inspiring character. I will never, ever forget him. His character inspired me to pierce through the heavens with my drill and fight for freedom. Despite being a tad reckless with his actions, there was an absolutely passionate anime character.
In the memory of… T_T
THE MOST AWESOME OTAKU IN AN OTAKU-CENTRIC SHOW: Konata (Lucky Star)
“A flat-chest is a status symbol!”
Our favorite little blue-haired, video game, eroge, and anime-obsessed female character had some of the most memorable interactions with her fellow cast members. Teasing and pissing off Kagami, constantly questioning Tsukasa’s intelligence, scolding her dad about his borderline-illegal activities with his camera, and making perverted comments on Miyuki’s breast size and moé-factor — hard not to get a chuckle out of it. (Despite that, you know she really DID care about her friends deep inside)
What I liked about her wasn’t just because she was “JUST the otaku” of the anime, there was more to her than just that — as seen in episode 22.
Kanata was a beautiful woman indeed. *sniff sniff* One of the warmhearted moments in Lucky Star.
Konata was also one of Aya Hirano’s best voice acting roles. I honestly believe no other voice actor could top the feel and tone she gave to Konata’s voice.
(Also, she kicked Fate’s ass in that previous poll of mine)
PINK SUPERVISOR: Nozomu Itoshiki (Sayonara Zetsubō Sensei)
“There’s no such thing as hope in this world, only despair!”
A suicidal, pessimistic teacher who actually makes hanging yourself look funny.
I like it how he carries around suicide manuals. There are actually books about that kind of thing?
(And am I the only person who thinks about Watanuki from ×××HOliC whenever I see his character design?!)
THE BEST ANIME GAIJIN: Patty Martin (Lucky Star)
“Sorry, I don’t understand those difficult Japanese words!”
Despite how little sense it is that a gaijin’s Japanese could be better than his/her English (most likey on the seiyuu’s part, even if her overall performance was good), it’s amusing to see a cute character portrayed as a foreigner who expects every single Japanese to be an otaku. Much more amusing than how gaijin are usually portrayed — as dirty, rude, slobs that get their asses beaten at a bar eventually.
A BADASS… MEDICINE SELLER: “The Medicine Seller” (Mononoke)
“Form, Truth, and Regret”
Hey, I’d choose a demon-killing medicine dude that could whip up hurricanes with his medicine over my current Pharmacy. Srsly.
LOLI OF THE YEAR: Shana (Shakugan no SHANA, II)
“Urusai urusai urusai!”
But unfortunately (to my dismay), because of the lack of the triple urusai this year (besides just once at the end of the first episode)…
The title goes to Nagi Sanzen’in (Hayate no Gotoku!), because Jaalin likes her ankles… >_____>
Just kidding, Shana remains victor, only for the sole fact that she managed to save her appeal with absolutely adorable Dorothy cosplay.
HOT TEACHER: Yoshinoya (Hidamari Sketch)
“oh god yoshinoya is hot”
Poor LOL FANG SENSEI lost out to Yoshinoya only because of the sheer fact she didn’t pop out some fawking hawt cosplay. Young, going to school half-naked, wacking students on the head… WHY CAN’T MOAR TEACHERS BE LIEK THEM?!!!
Helpless filler-inducing puppy dog, contradiction of canon: Konoe Fumina (Shakugan no SHANA II)
She’s memorable only because of the fact SHE TOOK AWAY THE SHANA I KNEW AND LOVE. Seriously, why in the world would you need someone to escort you to and from school, even when you have a butler available to drive you home in a limo and everywhere else (which we CLEARLY see during episode 11)? Even if you erase that fact, it’s not that hard memorize the path from your house to your school after the first go-around, so why does Yuji even bother the second time? YOU’RE NOT AUTISTIC, YOU DON’T NEED THAT MUCH HELP TO GET AROUND! If you ask me, she was just a tool to portray Yuji as a retard and to create that tedious jealousy arc.
Of course, I guess she’s okay around episode 10 and after, though. And no, I DON’T hate Hecate, I just hate the concept of this counterpart!
SIT BACK AND ENJOY THE RIDE, JACKASS: Makoto Itou (Nice boat… Um, School Days)
Couldn’t sympathize with him. Character interactions with the other characters were absolutely HORRIBLE besides managing to get them inside his pants.
Worst. Harem. Lead. Ever.
These characters will live on in my heart during 2008. Whether it’s a good or bad thing for some of them… meh, it’s up to me.