I’m two months late with this one, but I wasn’t gonna abandon this annual tradition entirely. I don’t know about the rest of you, but 2018 felt like a relatively weak year for OPs, though there were still some remarkable standouts and a plethora of solid enough contenders fighting to round out this top 25. If you’ve been following For Great Justice for a while, you’re likely already familiar with my OP and ED-grading criteria, but if haven’t (or if you need a refresher), these are my general rules:
The OP must have debuted in 2018. It can be from a show that premiered before 2018 or will continue airing after 2018, but the OP in question had to debut this past year.
I don’t need to have seen a show in order for its OP to be eligible on the list, but I recognize I’m inherently biased towards those I have seen since I’m able to parse additional context from them. OPs of long-running shounen adaptations tend to be absent here for that reason, so if you’re eagerly awaiting openings from say, One Piece, Black Clover, Boruto, or Gintama, you’ll probably be disappointed. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
My rankings are somewhatarbitrarily based on music composition, audio production, lyrics and delivery, visual production, audiovisual sync, visual creativity…and pretty much any other metric you could think of. Some of these aspects are weighted higher than others based on what I feel the OP in question is trying to accomplish.
Despite all that, none of these metrics are ever given numbers during the ranking process, and the craft-related pros and cons ultimately still fall second to my personal enjoyment. After all, objectivity is bullshit and these ratings are just my personal opinion. You are certainly entitled to disagree.
Alright, 2018’s done, my big ol’ annual music writeup’s been published, and now all that’s left on my plate is rebooting this place. First of all, thank you so much for your patience throughout For Great Justice’s hiatus the last several months. It should operate at normal capacity again starting this month, with the three usual seasonal coverage articles as well as Weekly Rundowns over on my Twitter.
Our little hiatus from covering anime didn’t extend to me taking a break from actually watching it, however! In addition to a handful of movies, I completed 31 seasonal series and dropped 38, making good on my resolution to be abit more selective about what I do with my time this year.
The dedicated otaku among you are bound to be familiar with most or all of these titles already, but the goal of this list isn’t just to recap what I loved this year. I’m also aiming to give people who don’t follow seasonal anime often or at all an idea of what they might enjoy from 2018 regardless of whether or not I did. Still, I’m gonna be pretty blunt about what I personally thought of these shows, so if you loved something I couldn’t stand or vice versa, do not view any of what follows as a personal attack. These are just my quick, oversimplified takeaways.
As usual, this will be done in tiers until the Top 10, which all get their own dedicated entries. We’ll start with the worst of the dropped titles then gradually move up to the completed, more positive ones. Sound good to y’all? I’m ready. I’m more than ready. Welcome to my 2018 in anime!
For Great Justice is not dead. We are merely sleeping, and this post is our middle-of-the-night bathroom break, which is to say the only reason it’s here is because I wouldn’t be able to focus on other tasks without the momentary pleasure of relieving myself of these wonderful, irrelevant thoughts on some anime ending themes. World, get ready to be my proverbial toilet.
Welcome back, everyone! We here at For Great Justice had a busy summer that resulted in no Mid-Season Thoughts coverage, but we’re here to remedy that and wrap up the season with a bang. Not that we have that many shows to recap, but which ones did we love? Which ones have we cooled on? And what did this summer ultimately have to offer compared to the rest of the year? Find out below on this belated, tiny batch of Final Thoughts!
Hello, everyone, and welcome back to another batch of seasonal first impressions! We’ve got a fantastic lineup for you all this time, with some of the most promising anime to debut in yea-
I can’t. I can’t say it with a straight face. Yata and Haru both concur: this is the weakest season of anime since FGJ began nearly four years ago, and our watchlists are in dire shape. It’s not completely hopeless, and a backlog season is always welcome, but prepare for a lot of disappointment below. We checked out a combined sixteen shows. We’re sticking with only a quarter of them. Which ones? Find out with this uncharacteristically harsh set of first impressions.
It’s that time of year again; the time of year where we try to wrap up our thoughts on whatever shows we stuck with this past spring…except like clockwork, no one’s listening because our audience is having a blast at Anime Expo without us. It’s cool, we get it, we only have…virtually nothing to be excited about next season. Even if it’s purely for indulgent, self-reflective purposes, spare us a few minutes and join Yata and Haru in taking one last trip down memory lane, covering whatever they’ve caught up with or completed from the latest season in the books.
Hello, everybody, and welcome back to For Great Justice. For…hopefully obvious reasons, none of us actually kept up with Darling in the FranXX after its first cour, and this spring, which was already one of FGJ’s lightest in terms of seasonal anime coverage, is about to get even lighter. While a select few shows have confidently muscled their way to the top, others have grown trite and lifeless, which means one thing: drop time. Find out what titles Yata and Haru spared and which they let go of on this mid-season update!
It’s the first impressions roundup you’ve all been waiting for!
…that is, unless you’ve been waiting for one that enthusiastically covers all the reboots, spinoffs, and mega-franchise hits airing this season, because this roundup includes almost none of them. Not to worry, though—a couple of them are on our marathon backlogs, which just means we weren’t going to cover them weekly anyway, and there’s too little time to check the pilots of shows where a “hold” outcome is inevitable. Instead, Yata and Haru mostly had a field day with spring’s brand new offerings and wound up with one of their most selective weekly schedules yet, but not for a lack of trying. What’s sticking around? What’s out early? And why do these fucking horsegirls not overthrow humanity and become Earth’s dominant species? Answers to two of those questions lie below. Read on!
Spring is just around the corner (if not already here), but the Megalo Boxes and Special Weeks and Tri Hero Academias can wait just a while longer: first things first, winter has ended, and what a winter this season was. This seasonal transition period was a bit tight, though: Yata and Haru both watched more than what they had time to cover here, but hopefully the quality will outweigh the quantity. The outcomes probably won’t surprise you either, but find out below what For Great Justice loved and simply put up with as this noteworthy winter anime season came to a close!
Author Note: This article was published shortly following the release of episode 10 of Darling in the FranXX. Future developments within the show may age the stances and topics discussed here, though hopefully it will still hold value as a snapshot in time and address larger concerns within society and approaches to media in general.
It’s been a while, fellas. I normally don’t write up mid-season thoughts for the blog outside our regularly-scheduled articles, in part because I rarely have the extra time, and also because I can cover most of my feelings on individual shows in those. But in a season stacked with more anime-of-the-year contenders than I think I’ve encountered from any one season in years, I want to discuss a title that isn’t working out as well as many people, myself included, thought it would. You know the one: Darling in the FranXX. Pre-season hype for it quickly faded to skeptical optimism and, more recently, persistent doubt. It’s a divisive show and my opinions are pretty divided on it as well. Virtually all the criticism I’ve seen of it is deserved.
But today, I’m not solely going to echo that. I’m going to defend its existence as well.