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Monday, January 29, 2018

Why are my new entries so high ranking?:

If these series weren't even being considered for 195th place before, how did they end up #161?  There's actually a logic behind it all.

The most difficult part of being ranked is that initial recognition of your series being great.  Once that frame of mind has slapped into place, it's then possible to compare the relative merits and demerits of the already ranked shows with the newly ranked shows to find out where they stand relative to each other.  If you don't think a show is great at all, you don't even start to make those necessary comparisons.

I decided these six shows were deserving of greatness by picking them out of the vast sea of good series, so they had just won a very competitive round of comparisons with scores of other shows.  I had a firm grasp on their merits and why they were better than all other possible options.  Then I turned my focus over to the shows already in my rankings and found that, lo and behold, the new shows I'd just picked out had fewer demerits than the ones actually in my rankings.

What are the problems bedeviling my lowest ranked series?  A)  They're too short.  B)  Massive abridgments to the content, resulting in the story skipping around randomly.  C)  Filler, filler everywhere.

Futari Ecchi has problems A and B, but not C, so it's better than the shows afflicted by C.  That's how it ends up at #195.

Granblue Fantasy suffers from zero problems, the second season means it's perfectly long enough.  Its relative lack of merits is what keeps it so low, but a flawless show with no demerits still earns you a ranking of #189.  Ika Musume, #190, also has no major problems, but is just a meandering show that never really goes anywhere and then suddenly breaks off.  When you have competition like that it's easy to win out.

High School Fleet is #184 because everything above it suffers from problems A-C.  Dimension W, for instance, suffers from problem B.  Joukamachi no Dandelion from problem C.  Sora no Otoshimono suffers from both B and C.  The same is true of Amagi Brilliant Park.  High School Fleet has no such problems.  It's a proper story with a proper ending, thanks to it being an anime original, it's hard to mess that up with 'abbreviated content' or 'filler.'  It's also 14 episodes, which is a hell of a lot more than Shamanic Princess' six, or Bastard!'s six, etc.

High School Fleet loses to a fully adapted Mahoromatic, because Mahoromatic doesn't suffer from problems A-C.  It's really that easy.  But if a series has no faults it's not going to lose to shows crippled by all sorts of problems.

Okay, so what about #168 Rokka no Yuusha?  It beats a lot of series that aren't suffering from issues A-C.  How did that happen?  Honestly, a lot of the series Rokka beat are boring -- at least in stretches and at times.  It was hard work rewatching them, heck, it was hard work just watching them for the first time.  They have valuable moments that make it all worthwhile, but Rokka no Yuusha has valuable moments too and no bad down time.  Assassination Classroom, Ghost in the Shell, Death Note, Tamayura and Ginga E Kickoff just seem to crawl at times.  Anyone who has watched these shows knows what I'm talking about.  These shows have peaks and valleys -- a lot of valleys, and the elevation gain of having to go up and down, up and down, is like climbing the same mountain ten times over.  It's a deceptively impossible hike.

Shuumatsu no Izetta's last four episodes or so are just one giant valley.  It's really dull and obnoxious.  Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind has lots of quiet, contemplative moments that really start to drag.

Oreshura has stronger and weaker characters, and it sucks when the story is stuck on a weak character, or doing one of its repetitive gags that aren't funny anymore.

Rokka no Yuusha isn't boring.  The story scintillates from the very start with an amazing action sequence, then quickly introduces one unique and intriguing character after the next.  The ride never stops, even the ending is just another cliffhanger.  That's why it rocketed all the way up to #168, it didn't have flaw "D" that all these other shows shared.

So what about Ryuuou at #161 and Imouto Sae Ireba Ii at #162?  The reason they went from unranked to way up high is perfectly normal -- they'd aired so shortly ago that my mind simply wasn't made up about them yet.  It's easy to polevault from unranked to highly ranked when you still aren't sure what you've just seen.  I needed time to process the first few episodes of Ryuuou no Oshigoto and get over my prejudice against vulgarity in the case of Imouto Sae Ireba Ii.  If I wanted to talk about the flaws in Atelier Escha, Fatal Fury and Battle Athletes that made them lose to these new shows, I would say that the series didn't really develop in the manner I wish they had.

I wanted Battle Athletes to be a straight story about Olmypic competition, all the violence and interstellar war stuff was the wrong direction.

Fatal Fury spent most of its time and budget on a movie which, despite being very good, is invented out of full cloth -- there's no source material for any of the villains in the movie.  I wish they had used that same level of quality on the actual plot found in their games.

Atelier Escha has a maddening problem wherein Escha and Logy never get together, despite being perfect for each other.  And so on.  I wouldn't say the series suffer from problems A-D, but poor writing does just that little bit of damage that sinks them under these new shows.

H2, Hunter x Hunter and Touch suffer from the exact same problem 'E', of the writing taking a sudden turn for the worse, but they're still ranked above Imouto and Ryuuou due to their enormous lengths bailing them out.  Even with a bad right turn at the end, the hundreds of episodes of entertainment they provided beforehand is enough to out-compete the two merely 12 ep newbies.  Now if Imouto Sae Ireba Ii or Ryuuou no Oshigoto! were to get a second season, all bets would be off. . .

As you can see, a great deal of thought is put into each and every place in my rankings.  In fact, I just watched the openings of all 200 anime in their newly ranked order and my gut feeling says I nailed the order precisely.  I felt a little bad about Tales ranking so lowly, until I reminded myself just how badly they had butchered Eternia and Zestiria.  For those affronts it serves Tales right.

I also felt, after watching all 200 openings, that all 200 series definitely belonged in the hall of honor, and the newbies were not mere placeholders, but genuinely good series that deserved their higher than bottom feeder ranks.  These are healthy, strong additions to my lineup, better than many series who were already here, with nothing to be ashamed about.

I also felt that these 200 series were so good and so all-encompassing that I wouldn't mind if no new anime franchise were ever made again.  I wish instead that the 200 series listed here were actually adapted to their endings.  That would make the world a better place.  But these shows are so good at covering every possible angle life might throw at you, every possible type of person, every interesting aspect to life, every plot, every setting, every circumstance or relationship, every interesting job or hobby, that there's no real need to seek any further.  Of course, I don't mind being given bonus material from here on, but I really feel like my life is already complete as is.  200 series is enough to explore the world, and they did a really fine job of it, too.  Enough that I simply have no complaints.  It's a wonderful world that they've painted, it's very beautiful, and I'm content to have lived in it.

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