I’m going to assume, for the sake of convenience and my ego, that you all read my last post, ‘Anime Appreciation’ and now are craving more. If so, do I have good news for you! If you watch the three anime below you should satisfy your craving and gain the groundwork to hold a discussion with any anime fan.
First up we have a literal giant of anime, or more accurately, a Titan with Attack on Titan. Attack on Titan is set in a darkly fantastic post-apocalyptic world where humans hide behind colossal walls as a defense against the Titans, gigantic humanoids whose only motivation seems to be to mindlessly eat humans. The series is essentially a great example of bildungsroman as it focuses on a young trio who are guided by their hatred of the Titans and their desire to see the world beyond the walls and enlist in the military.
Next up on the recommendation roller coaster is Cowboy Bebop, your neo-noir space western. If you heard the phrase space western and immediately thought of Firefly– you’re not too far off base. Cowboy Bebop feels like it was made to show everyone what anime could be: artistic (particularly of note is the score, the opening credit sequence is a sublime fusion of jazz with Latin influences), targeting an adult audience, and able to cover themes that anime had previously avoided- all while still retaining a sense of humor.
The last stop is Death Note, a supernatural psychological thriller. For your protagonist you get Light Yagami, a dissatisfied youth who descends into a Machiavellian anti-hero after finding a notebook that gives him power over a Shinigami (a god of death). Opposing Light is eccentric genius detective L; the high stakes game that ensues between the two is as entertaining as it is thought provoking.
If you’ve been enticed but you are currently focusing on your summer Book Bingo you could give the Attack on Titan or Death Note manga a try for a ‘Young Adult Book’, ‘Out of Your Comfort Zone,’ or ‘Translated from Another Language’ squares.
~posted by Garrett D.