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Old 2009-06-29, 06:57   Link #9
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ohio, United States
Age: 38
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I applaud the effort you made in your request, from the information there, hopefully you'll find a few gems you've missed.

I've actually not seen it myself, but Maison Ikkoku seems like something you'd enjoy. It was created by Rumiko Takahashi, the famous creator of Urusei Yatsura, Ranma 1/2, and Inuyasha. From what I've read it is more like UY than Ranma, focused on characters and comedy, rather than the action of her later works.

I'll second Kino's Journey. I actually kept hearing good things about it and it being compared to Mushi-shi, so I bought it back when Best Buy had their crazy price sale--I bought so much it has sat on myself until I have time to process it all.

I strongly suggest Dennou Coil under the interesting concept catergory. DC is set i in the near future--while many anime seem to be radically different from our own world, the concept of DC is there's virtual glasses that let you see virtual items in the city. Without a doubt, the line between reality and illusion is a major theme of the anime. The action scenes are slick and steamless, making it a treat to wash, though they aren't the focus of the show, which blends character development and philosophy. It seemed alot like a Ghibli film, in terms of quality and interest.

If you don't mind slow paced, then I'll suggest Zettai Shonen. I finished ZS awhile back and while its certainly slow and boring for some people, I've actually found it to be interesting--the characters are rather true to life, no brash young heroes wielding swords or girls with magical power, instead we have a kid spending his summer in a rural town with his dad (his parents have divorced). There's an underling mystery there too, but it comes out not through events as much as the characters talking and interacting--the dialogue while realistic is often boring for some people to watch.

You might enjoy Utawarerumono, it has a feel much like the old Romance of Three Kingdoms games--it does some wonderful world building too, which sadly most shows largely lack--it borrows a bit from the aino culture as well. The thing that really makes this show stand out among the dozens of fantasy shows I've seen is the main character is an adult and acts like one. He thinks through his decisions and pays the piper when he makes mistakes. He's not the best fighter on the show, but instead he's the best thinker. There's a touch of philosophy in the show as well, which is pretty interesting to me.

Heck, while I am out it, I'd be remiss not to mention Kure-nai. Kure-nai is a hybrid of shows, it has large amounts of slice of life, short and spectular action scenes, plenty of comedy, but what really makes it stand out to me is the character development. It isn't a show you'll necessarily appreciate episode by episode, though they are certainly entertaining. The comedy is first rate and the dialogue is probably the best I've seen, with characters really sounding like they should. Perhaps Murasaki is a bit too wise for her years, but she makes plenty of mistakes too--and learns from them rather than being stubborn, like so very, very many anime characters. The characters develop scene by scene and they spiral very quickly. You can't let your eyes glaze over--you really have to pay attention or they'll pass you by. There were alot of "minor" scenes that really were important to how the characters developed. The show poses a central conflict and then over the course of the journey, decisively solves it. At first I was rather unhappy with the ending, but over time and musing, I found it to be the only ending that confronts the central conflict--indeed the only possible good ending. The symbolism isn't as readily apparent as something like Haibane Renmei, however it is still there, especially if you consider it from an Eastern perspective. The only bad thing I felt about it was the opening and ending sequences, neither which fit the anime.

There is one taboo in the show that some might find distrubing.
Spoiler for Taboo:

I've hear Bartender is amazing but its still on my want to watch list.

I'd rather like to suggest Serial Expertiments Lain (same creator as Haibane Renmei, but its fairly dark, even more than Ergo Proxy in my opinion, so you might not like it. Likewise, I'd like suggest Higurashi (It starts out almost like a bad harem, with minium gore to maxium effect but wow it takes you on a different path entirely and becomes very intriguing within the first few episodes--and from there it really never lets go at keeping you guessing). Maybe even something like Ghost Hound, though I am still in the process of watching it myself.

Finally, there's a host of good movies or ovas out there, but you didn't seem that interested in them. If you change your mind, I'd suggest Voices of a Distant Star and 5 Centimeters per Second but Makoto Shinkai. Voices is merely a 30 minute ova, but there's more plot and depth than characters often recieve in seasons of anime...the first part of 5 Centimeters is probably one of the most touching things I've seen period. Both also have incredibly animation, with attention to detail on every frame and simply amazing use of light. Finally among movies, I'd suggest The Girl Who Leapt through Time--trite concept of time travel, but amazing executation on making it fresh and entertaining.
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