Musings and Reflections – end of 2016

      Well, everyone’s doing their yearly roundups and I also thought – why not? Probably a bit late (I was waiting for the 12th episode of 3-gatsu that never came on Saturday so that slightly messed up with my schedule), but as the saying goes – better late than never, even if it looks that in the end I got a bit carried away more than once.

     It seems like the overall consensus opinion was that the last year in general wasn’t something good – not everyone is happy with political situations and just lack of stability in many countries, many famous (and not) people died… Well, to think about the latter one, even if I’m too cynical, there are many famous (and elderly) people so such news isn’t that unnatural. At least I hope that many famous people have been born on 2016. Only confirming or denying that is a bit problematic right now. Thinking more positively, even with all the tensions rising in many of the corners of the world, we still somehow managed not to destroy humanity (even if such a scenario as in Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita is quite compelling). So yeah, everything’s just going on, as it has been, with some bad things happening and some good.

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     For me the year also was kind of normal, but looking with an optimistic outlook, the biggest change was probably starting this blog (*some applause from behind the scene*) and also getting to read more solid opinions of fellow bloggers than you could ever find in any forum. That also comes with a bit of a cost since frankly becoming exposed to such a variety of ideas not once did I feel jealous of other people’s achievements in mature thinking, analyzing, grabbing attention, managing and growing their blogs, productivity  and many other things. Well, someone has said that for anything you think you do well there are at least a hundred Asian people (with all due respect) that are doing it incomparably better.  I don’t think I’m very distinguishable from many other anime bloggers, but oh well, I’m having fun writing stuff, so I’ll keep doing it and I guess at least the near future is more to the brighter side than not.

     Getting to the anime world in this year, I found some interesting things. I don’t think many people would say that 2016 was the best year in anime history, but looking formally guess which year has the most entries in the MAL’s Top 100? Yep, you aren’t mistaken. And 2016 wins by a large margin, having 16 entries and a cherry on the top of all the list – Kimi no Na wa, while the 2nd place goes to 2011 with 11. Hell, even every year up to 2006 combined has less entries than 2016 alone. I guess looking formally to such a thing won’t always produce very logical results. More people than ever are watching anime and they tend to choose newer shows. As many of the new people are rather inexperienced, there’s a high chance of a particular show to get a good evaluation if a person rating it hasn’t got a very wide context of previous years. Well, I guess no one would rate their first several anime with less  than, say, 8/10 no matter what shows they’d be. I think such shows like Boku dake ga Inai Machi in the list confirm that. Also, second (and later) seasons tend to be evaluated better since anyone who didn’t like the first season won’t watch a sequel and automatically won’t rate it. I don’t say second seasons are bad, they just have a higher probability to be rated more favorably. A huge pile of Gintama on the top of the list, plenty of Haikyuu, Natsume or Jojo affirm that.

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     Apart from getting quite high consensus ratings, many popular shows in 2016 were rather polarizing – Boku dake ga Inai Machi or Re:Zero ignited many debates about their quality. KonoSuba and Yuri!!! on Ice probably were the most original popular anime that offered something rather new and unseen to some degree. For me the most memorable experience came from Rakugo, Fune wo Amu, Flying Witch (and to a lesser degree the 2nd season of Shirayuki) all of whom in my opinion are definitely worth checking. Of course, more and more new shows being produced also means more forgettable anime, but let’s just leave it at that. Apart from new shows, I can say I didn’t waste my year, getting some taste of Jin-Rou, Baccano and Spice and Wolf among others, which I highly recommend to anyone who’s yet managed to escape such great things.  I guess one of my goals for 2017 will be to engage more some older anime and keep seasonal watching to a minimum (though that’s not happening during Winter 2017), as I’m relatively new to anime community and haven’t yet seen such classics as Clannad, Madoka Magica, Monogatari series or Death Note. Well, at least I feel a bit smarter in many aspects concerning anime, getting a bit interested in sakuga, various connections between shows and how they are made, as well as getting into shows that I’d have never myself imagined watching (Yuri!!! on Ice or Little Witch Academia for example). Also I’m very happy to have started gathering a little anime (and stuff) collection that still looks notably meager, but nevertheless gives joy  every time I look at it. Even only some volumes of newly published Nichijou manga are a priceless source of optimism.

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     So yeah, I guess the last year just more or less normally passed by. Future perspectives are also rather ordinary and we just have to move on to the 2017. Thanks everyone for sticking around last year and I hope the New Year will prove to be exceptionally good in each and every aspect – keep writing, keep reading and have fun!

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