Moments of 2017: Playing Catch Up On Anime From 2016

Writing these sort of things is never easy. It means having to pick one moment above the rest in shows and movies that likely have a dozen I’d like to choose from. That’s why I get greedy and mention two or three, sometimes more. I have and always will be playing catch up, which makes it a lot harder for me revisit these just to be sure what moment, if I have one at all, is my favourite from each respective series.

I really wish I had kept track of my favourite moments throughout the year. Because it is in hindsight that I realize just how difficult it is to recall any scenes, let alone my favourites, from shows I watched this year, especially the ones many months ago. Some have too many for me to confidently pick one over the rest. That’s my disclaimer for the moments listed below. Maybe they’re not my actual favourite moments from these shows that I watched this year, but they are certainly among the most memorable ones, and deserve a place here I think. So if it’s any consolation consider these at least among my favourite moments from anime this (last) year.

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Yuri!!! on Ice

Drunk Yuuri Katsuki and company dancing during the party meeting. I especially really like Yuri Plisetsky’s competitive edge here, as he tries to outdo a drunk Yuuri in dancing (to impress Victor perhaps, who is a blast to see laugh and enjoy himself here as well). It’s funny. It’s playful. It’s full of character. And it’s just overall a really good time.

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Kizumonogatari

Part One gave me the intense and visceral moment of Araragi burning up in sunlight, and being saved by Shinobu from any extended torture of incineration. It’s also the one with perhaps the greatest headpat scene in all of anime. Part Two had some lechery from Hanekawa blushing over Araragi’s topless body, and Meme Oshino being Meme Oshino.  And Part Three provided me with both kinds of the moments listed above: some hilarious lasciviousness between Araragi and Hanekawa resolving themselves for some breast fondling… and then “chickening out”, and a brutal and touching fight between Kiss-Shot and Araragi with some pretty violent imagery.

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New Game!

Not much comes to mind when I think of a moment that really stood out to me in New Game. It mostly just felt like a nice show, and I wasn’t expecting really much else from it. So I think I’ll just leave a slide of scenes I found very pleasant, since I can’t bring myself to feel particularly confident in any answer I give. So here’s a slideshow of scenes I really liked.

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Planetarian: Chiisana Hoshi no Yume

I liked the meeting between Kuzuya and Hoshino. I really liked Kuzuya’s reluctant, but soft hearted act of good will towards Hoshino in repairing the projector, and give Hoshino the chance to restore his childhood enchantment of the stars. And I, of course, really liked the shoot-out between Kuzuya and the rogue robot. But the moment that truly shined is the one that most likely stuck in the hearts of anyone who came out of it teary-eyed. And that is Hoshino’s goodbye.

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ReLIFE

So much to love. Kaizaki returning to high school and realizing how out of tune he is when it comes to tests and fitness. An’s reveal as best girl-I mean, another of Kaizaki’s supervisors. Chizuru’s admittance to her difficulties forming lasting bonds, resulting in her misunderstood personality. Oga realizing his feelings for Kariu. Yet it’s Kaizaki’s visit to Saiki’s grave, the flood of grim and harsh memories, and the meeting with the new employees that I think I appreciated the most.

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Shokugeki no Souma: Ni no Sara

I think more than anything, what I like seeing now from Shokugeki no Souma is the characters climbing higher and higher on the ladder to become god-tier chefs. It’s really interesting seeing Soma and Hisako pair up and help a restaurant deliver better service and turn their establishment around. But it was also really interesting seeing Soma be assigned to Kojirō’s new restaurant, and watching him adapt to the extremely high standards of the elite. Seeing him grow and evolve from the experience is always a treat.

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Girlish Number

I could go with something different here. There’s a lot I would love to highlight, because the show does so much right. Yet I feel I’ll be repeating myself with this one. As much as I want to give the others the spotlight here, I still choose Chitose realizing her faults and having a heart-to-heart with her brother… is what I would say if I hadn’t done a post on it already.

No, actually it’s the moment Koto mentions how she had decided that this was going to be her last shot at making a career in voice acting. How she takes the history of closed doors in stride, and despite the surplus of problems and things to not like about the job, she manages to keep a smile on her face. But since I wasn’t able to find an image for that, here’s her drinking with the gang.

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Kanpai!

Oshiete! Galko-chan

Even though I liked this show, I don’t have much to say about it, or much in the way of moments I remember that I think are worth mentioning. The only one that sticks out in mind is… Galko to the rescue!

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Bye-bye!

Durarara!!x2

Since this one is split into three separate series, it’s only fair to give it three moments I think. Shou ended with an awesome showdown between alliances, and was full of entertaining exchanges between personalities, which all kicked off from a mano-a-mano between Kadota and Chikage, and finished on them becoming best of pals. Ten gave me a lot of Shizuo and Izaya to enjoy, but more importantly it gave Shizuo… Vorona. And Ketsu gave me many things to love as well, but this scene from Akabayashi was particularly enjoyable for me.

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Bakuon!!

Even though I’m not all that interested in motorcycles, I really appreciate this show’s exploration into hobbyist culture as a whole. There are so many conversations here that are relatable in a general sense. You could substitute the mentions of ‘motorcycles’ and/or ‘bikes’ for ‘anime’ or ‘games’ for instance and it’s uncanny how similar the discussions are. There is a kind of love here that is authentic, because it is unafraid to go in detail about all the problems and reasons to not like a certain hobby. Yet, fan behaviour persists, both of the understood and irrational variety. And while I am one who very much likes to attempt to figure out and explain why I like these hobbies of mine, it is the moments where Hane realizes her love for her newfound avocation that I really enjoy above all else.

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Akagami no Shirayukihime

Man, was this show an absolute delight. While it may not rank among my favourite shows from this year, it certainly reigns supreme as being one of, if not, the most pleasant, and just full of charming good feels. And while there are plenty of lovely moments between characters, it’s the one where Obi, Shirayuki, and Garak put their heads together to perfect and share a drink. Even if it was odd for Shirayuki to collapse just to show how much of a lightweight she is, I thought the smiles and little bit of social bonding here made the moment special and the visuals really helped bring out the beauty in it. So much goodness.

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