Characters of 2012 (Happy New Years!)

Needs some Kanon, Air, and Clannad

Now that 2013 has begun, it’s time for me to talk about my favorite aspect of ani­me: the char­ac­ters, specif­i­cal­ly ones from 2012.

I can’t stress this enough. The qual­i­ty of sto­ry­telling in an ani­me and its orig­i­nal­i­ty are cru­cial aspects in mak­ing an ani­me mem­o­rable, but I always believed that whether or not a series had good char­ac­ter­i­za­tion and lik­able char­ac­ters is what makes or breaks an ani­me, in terms of decid­ing it it’s watch­able to you. At the very least, that’s how an ani­me real­ly leaves an impres­sion on me. No mat­ter how well-built the sto­ry is or how orig­i­nal it is, if it has bor­ing char­ac­ters, it won’t leave much of a last­ing effect on me. Or, you know, it can have char­ac­ters that I absolute­ly loathe and it’ll also leave an effect on me, albeit a bad one. It works conversely!

I sup­pose a good exam­ple would be just from look­ing at a dozen of clas­sic ani­me out there, the ones that aren’t too old but are con­sid­ered retro in the present times. Those gems from the 80’s to 90’s prob­a­bly don’t have sto­ries that we’d con­sid­er to be unique con­cepts today, but the char­ac­ter­i­za­tion and char­ac­ter dynam­ics were so good that they were able to hold the show/story up enough for peo­ple to remem­ber them decades lat­er. And obvi­ous­ly, char­ac­ters are cru­cial in decid­ing whether a slice-of-life ani­me with no over­ar­ch­ing plot is enjoyable.

This is a list of my per­son­al favorite char­ac­ters from 2012. 

Best Les­bian Gen­ki Girl: Kyouko Toshi­nou (YuruYuri♪♪)

The anime version of all of us

Hard choice between her and Akarin. But in true spir­it to the series’s treat­ment of Akarin, I’ll have to go with the for­mer. She’s by far the fun­ni­est char­ac­ter in YuruYuri, which is say­ing a lot since pret­ty much every char­ac­ter in that ani­me is amus­ing. I enjoy her wild per­son­al­i­ty, her obses­sion with dou­jins and Miraku­run, and her atti­tude towards school which pret­ty much rep­re­sents me dur­ing high school.

Also, that toma­to pajama.

ADHD Wai­fu: Rik­ka Takanashi (Chu­u­niby­ou demo Koi ga Shi­tai!)

HETEROCHROMIA HNNNNNNNNG

What can I say? Any­one who could hate this girl has no soul. The sto­ry with her dad pulled on my heart­strings some­what. But her Chu­u­niby­ou-cen­tric per­son­al­i­ty, inter­ac­tions with Yuu­ta and Deko­mori, etc. were what made the ani­me an enjoy­able watch even before the bits of plot came about (where it was mere­ly Wai­fu: The Ani­me by Kyoto Ani­ma­tion). Her antics put a smile on my face, thus the attach­ment grew, and when it was time for the feel train to arrive in the world of Chu2byo, I found her plight to be gen­uine­ly depressing. 

Also, this.

Russian/Japanese Engr­ish Mas­ter Good­ness: Kudryav­ka Nou­mi (Lit­tle Busters!)

GOOD MORNING EVERYONE HAVE A NICE DAY!

Next to Rin, she’s my favorite female in the Lit­tle Buster crew. Her “wafuu” is the equiv­a­lent of Air’s “gao” and Kanon’s “uguu”, and you guys know how much I love my ani­me catch­phras­es and char­ac­ter­is­tic man­ner­isms. She’s also the Lit­tle Busters! source of hilar­i­ous Key Engr­ish, which start­ed with Suno­hara’s “pret­ty dog,” and total­ly bleeds into Rewrite to epic proportions. 

Hon­or­able men­tion to MUSCLE MAN OF THE YEAR: Masato. KINNIKUU YAY YAY

JUST JOSHIRAKU: Mask-san (Joshi­raku)

WHO ARE YOU

Bizarre choice. I know. Why not Mari?

Because the mys­te­ri­ous Mask-san is a char­ac­ter that rep­re­sents every­thing I love about this ani­me as well as all of Kumeta’s oth­er works. She’s weird, ran­dom, and bizarre — her very pres­ence is unusual. 

Won­der how she per­forms raku­go when she’s mute…

Oh well. Hope every­one had a Hap­py New Year!

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