top 10

Yata’s Top EDs of 2022

Howdy again, y’all! It’s great to be alive, and I say that with particular gusto as, mere hours after my previous post on this here blog, I came down with a 103.6ºF fever. The culprit? You guessed it: COVID. Yes, I was vaccinated and boosted—this current strain going around doesn’t give a fuck. That it could’ve been even worse (and that I made it three years before succumbing for a spell) doesn’t escape me, and I consider myself extra fortunate as I’d accomplished almost all of my year-end projects just in the nick of time to rest up and recover with nothing hanging over my head.

That said, there was one last loose end to tie up before sending the blog back into hibernation: my top 10 EDs of the year. With my OP lists, almost anything is fair game: whether I watched a show or not, whether I finished it or not, I’ll give any OP eligible in the time frame a look; I want to witness and promote the best of the best. But EDs, while a craft onto themselves, have a lower bar to clear. Fewer of them stand out. The ones that do manage to stand out do so a lot. And so this year, already spit-balling 10 I wanted to highlight solely out of shows I finished, I eschewed the notion of checking out every 2022 ED in the database. I revisited those from every show I watched, but I knew what picks would most honestly reflect my faves from the year and I got them right the first time around.

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Yata’s 2022 Anime Year In Review / Top 10

Another year of anime in the books, y’all! 2022 was full of teases and delayed gratification—hyped hits of yore received middling continuations, several less than stable productions were forced to hiatus, and the year undoubtedly peaked in its final season, the three leading up to it sorely lacking contenders for all-time great status. But peak it finally did, and now that the end is upon us, it’s about time to give y’all my personal recap, repping every show I checked out, ranging from atrocious one-and-dones to my absolute favorites.

Not much change in the layout this time; I’ll start by listing some of the easiest drops, work my way up to ones I wouldn’t have minded continuing under better circumstances, then hop into what I did finish, from regrettable letdowns I wish I let go of earlier to honorable mentions that barely missed my top ten. Those ten studded titles have earned their own blurbs as a longer pitch to sell you on their strengths, and in between the two halves of the list, I’ll also mention any anime films I saw which received a screening or streamable release in the U.S. in 2022 (though they may have premiered abroad earlier than this year).

The tier titles this time are quotes courtesy of Brian David Gilbert, whose videos I have binged to keep me sane over the last month or two. They’re just what were freshest on my mind—and many of them fit what’s coming uncomfortably well.

Without further ado, here’s my anime recap of 2022:

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Yata’s 2021 Anime Year In Review / Top 10

And just like that, another year’s over. 2021 was one hell of a mixed bag for me personally, but as far as anime’s concerned, it seems like one of the most productive years for the medium in recent memory. You have to look at the big picture, though; half the reason this year was so unforgiving in its deluge of output was due to pandemic-delayed series finally seeing the light of day. Factor in the industry trend of increasing quantity (I tried over 100 anime this year—that’s a first), and if you were bored by anime in 2021, you must not have been looking hard enough for stuff to enjoy. There was plenty of it.

…And a lot of forgettable filler, as the laws of proportionality would have you suspect. The following rundown aims to cover all of them, starting with the premieres I curiously tried for an episode or two but nonetheless dropped. After those I’ll do the same for shows (and movies) I finished, with my top ten picks each receiving their own dedicated entry. Everything before the top 10 isn’t individually “ranked” per se, just grouped how I see most fit to illustrate the impressions they left. Those groups need names, and keeping these tiers aligned to a theme helps get the point across better, so this year, let’s go with uhhhhhh quotes from that one A/C Repair skit. Why? Why not? It had to be something.

Without further ado, let’s send out the year with the little diligence I have left and a boatload of sass.

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Yata’s Top 10 EDs of 2021

Hey, everyone. Yata here. Last time I logged in to post, spring had just sprung, but in the months since, mostly for work-life balance-related reasons, myself and Haru thought it best to put lengthy For Great Justice projects on hold.

Up front, I’ll confirm that hiatus from seasonal coverage will probably continue into 2022, but I still feel motivated to give our readers and friends something after all the radio silence, so my annual wrap-up material—my Favorite EDs, Favorite OPs, and Year in Review/Top 10 posts—will still arrive as usual, spaced out every few weeks before January if all goes well. To kick it all off, why not get the shortest one out of the way first?

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Yata’s 2020 Anime Year in Review / Top 10

The end is near, oh, thank God, the end is fuckin’ NEAR. Every year I whine “waaah this year sucked, yadda yadda, on to next year,” but uh, holy shit, 2021…please, I’m begging you, no new viruses, alright? Maybe some slightly more competent political leadership while we’re at it? My expectations are still low, but for as long as the current situation remains a thing, I’ll be using the free time I get to stare at a screen and watch cartoons. That’s just what we do around here at For Great Justice, and if anything made 2020 bearable, it was the one-two pick-me-up of watching anime—some fantastic, others horrendous—and then chatting about them with my pals online.

With a new year (and an absurdly stacked winter season) on our doorstep, it’s time to reflect with one final article on what 2020 meant for anime. Some might define it by pandemic delays, others by a smattering of sequels that brought magnificent closure to huge franchises. For me, breakout original productions mostly stole the show, but we’ll get to those in due time—first, I’ve gotta explain what exactly I’m doing here.

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Yata’s Top 10 EDs of 2020

It’s Yata, back for the third month in a row with takes about anime themes. What do you mean, “already?” I told you there wouldn’t be a huge wait this time around! What do you take me for, a liar? My record speaks for itself: I may be wrong about things, but I never intentionally lie. It’s for that very reason you should be able to trust that I ain’t bullshitting you: these following ten anime EDs are my favorites the medium gave us in 2020.


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Yata’s Top 10 EDs of 2019

Hey, everyone. Yata here. I’m now 9 months late to what’s supposed to be an annual tradition here at For Great Justice, my opinions about the year’s OPs and EDs, but better late than never, I guess. If nothing else, you lot kept demanding the usual content, and while I’d normally be happy to provide, my time management has gone completely out the window and it will probably remain there through the end of the year. There will be no good time to churn these overdue pieces out. Their day has passed. But in order to get any head start for this year’s OP and ED list, I’ve first got to make good on last year’s promise. There can’t be a gap in the timeline. My pride won’t allow it.

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Yata’s 2019 Anime Year in Review / Top 10

This has been a weird week. I’ve been cooped up at home with a nasty, fatiguing cold I can’t seem to shake, one of my “bands” just put out our massive new album, and as I type this, “World War III” has been trending for about 24 hours and I’m sure we won’t hear the last of that soon. But I’m here today to say farewell to something else: 2019. More specifically, the anime it had to offer us. Last year brought the decade to a fair enough close; there wasn’t a ton of close competition for the top spots on this list (especially because my beloved My Hero Academia and Chihayafuru won’t wrap up their current seasons until this spring and are thus ineligible this time around), but I still feel satisfied with the best of the best that we got.

If this ain’t your first rodeo here, you know how this goes. If you are new, here’s how I do this: I’m gonna briefly and remorselessly oversimplify my thoughts on each of the 30-something shows I dropped early from 2019 followed by expanding a bit more on the 30 or so shows (and movies) that I saw to completion. All those entries are clustered in tiers (this year named after quotes from one of my band’s most iconic tracks) until the top 10, which get their own special individual treatment where I do my best to sell you, casual watcher, diehard, or anywhere in between, on my favorites. Sound good enough? Rad. Let’s get crackin’. Here’s my all-in-one reflection on anime in 2019.

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Yata’s 2018 Anime Year in Review / Top 10

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 a bit 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!

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Yata’s Top 10 EDs of 2018

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.

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