Top Ten Anime, Manga, and Movies of 2020

Jujutsu Kaisen

I’ve heard about Jujutsu Kaisen, but I thought it was just another demon manga/anime series. Considering my history with anime (Yu Yu Hakusho and Demon Slayer), I should have known not to prejudge based on tropes. Regardless, I Iove this series. It’s still in the middle but I like the world building, characters, and animation so far.

Jujutsu Kaisen Episode 1: Recap and Review


Tower of God

Manhwa (Korean comics) has become an important source for anime adaptation. Tower of God was my first exposure to the series by Lee Jong-hui. The story centers on Twenty-Fifth Bam. Trapped with his friend Rachel underneath the mysterious Tower, he follows her into the Tower. Bam encounters challenges on each floor of the Tower as he searches for Rachel. The first season is phenomenal, ending in a shocking cliffhanger.

Is Tower of God Good?


Deca-Dence

Deca-Dence is a series set in the distant future, insect-like creatures called Gadoll have forced humanity towards extinction. I had no expectation for this series, so it was a surprise when Deca-Dence turned out to be far more sophisticated. The series was full of twists and turns, while making a critique of capitalism. Its themes are topically for 2020, and it was one of the most original anime of the year.

Deca-Dence Episode 1: Recap and Review


Pokemon: Twilight Wings

One of the biggest surprises of this year was Pokemon: Twilight Wings. A seven episode limited animated series, set in the Galar Region, the short anime series follows the citizens of Galar. Despite the short length of the series and each episode, Pokemon: Twilight Wings was impactful. All seven focused on side characters expanding the Pokemon universe through the eyes of Galar citizens. Pokemon: Twilight Wings was an emotional series with great animation.

Pokemon: Twilight Wings, a short anime series based on Sword and Shield games


The God of High School

I was excited about The God of High School from the moment they announced it. I wasn’t disappointed. Like Tower of God, it based on the series created by Yongje Park. While the series doesn’t reinvent the wheel, there are enough surprises to keep you interested. The God of High School balances humor with high octane action.

‘The God of High School,’: An instant hit


Burn the Witch (Manga/Movie)

The most expected manga for me was Tite Kubo’s Burn the Witch. The series also released a movie of the same name. Both cover the same material, but I preferred the anime. We’re introduced to the principal characters, “Noel and Ninny, the world of Reverse London, and it all ends with a battle with an ancient dragon, Cinderella.” With the addition of music, sound effects, and explosions, Burn the Witch is a unique experience when animated.

Burn the Witch Episode 1–3: Recap and Review


Kimetsu no Yaiba : The Movie – Mugen Train

Kimetsu no Yaiba: The Movie–Mugen Train is the first film from the Demon Slayer series. A direct sequel from the anime series, the film retells the Mugen Train arc. Tanjiro, Zenitsu, and Inosuke join the Flame Hashira, Kyojuro Rengoku in investigating disappearances on the Infinity Train. The movie centers on the themes of humanity and accepting death. Once again, Tanjiro emotional intelligence stands out.

Kimetsu no Yaiba: The Movie–Mugen Train Review


Made in Abyss: Dawn of the Deep

I can’t wait for the Made in Abyss series returns. In the meantime, Abyss has produced three movies. The first two were recap movies, with Dawn of the Deep telling the Ido Front Arc. Made in Abyss continues to flush out the harsh universe, as Nanachi, Reg, and Riko head down towards the center of the Abyss. Like the Demon Slayer movie, using a film to tell an arc is proving to be a wonderful decision.

Made in Abyss: Dawn of the Deep Soul, Recap and Review


Dorohedoro

Dorohedoro follows Kaiman, a man with a lizard head, as he tries to find the one magic user that cursed him. Kaiman also has amnesia, making his search even more difficult. Dorohedoro is an odd series with a strange world. Each character has unique designs and powers to match. Dorohedoro is a stylised violent series with a intriguing mystery at its center.

Dorohedoro Episode 1 Recap & Review


Haikyuu!! To the Top

I wasn’t into anime sports series until Yuri on Ice. I was so impressed with the series I wanted to give another popular sports anime a chance. Haikyuu!! To the Top is the fourth season of the volleyball anime. It separates Hinata and rival Kageyama as they develop apart. Hinata learns more about volleyball without playing and Kageyama sharpens his skills with Japans best. Once reunited, Hinata, Kageyama and the rest of Karasuno battle in the Spring Tournament.

Haikyuu!! Fourth Season, Episode 1: Recap and Review

Top Five Videogames I’m Looking forward to in 2021

1. Far Cry 6

Developer: Ubisoft Toronto

Publisher: Ubisoft

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PS5, Xbox Series X

The upcoming sixth game in the Far Cry series, Far Cry 6, is a first-person shooter. Set on the fictional Caribbean island, Yara, you play guerilla fighter Dani Rojas. Players will make weapons, use vehicles, hire Amigos, and use the “Fangs for Hire” system all in service to topple a dictatorship. Anton Castillo (Giancarlo Esposito) is a fascist dictator. His son, Diego (Anthony Gonzalez) struggles with the expectations his father has placed on him. The Far Cry series has sold over 50 millions copies since 2004. Personally, I’ve only played 3 entries, but Far Cry 6 has me excited.


2. Resident Evil Village

Developer: Capcom

Publisher: Capcom

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PS5, Xbox Series X

The latest entry in the storied survival horror series, Resident Evil Village, is the tenth major instalment in the series. A direct sequel to Resident Evil 7: Biohazard Village takes place a few years later. Chris Redfield re-enters the life of Ethan Winters, shooting his wife Mia. Ethan finds himself in a mysterious village searching for answers. I enjoyed Resident Evil 7: Biohazard until the end that felt too much like Call of Duty, abandoning the horror elements that made the game frighting. Hopefully, this next game will continue the horror aspects of the last game.


3. Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2

Developer: Nintendo

Publisher: Nintendo

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

I’m never disappointed with a Zelda game, and Breath of the Wild was no different. A launch game for the Nintendo Switch in 2017, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, received critical acclaim for its gameplay and attention to detail. Many consider the game to be one of the greatest games of all time, selling over 20 million copies, making it the highest selling video gems of all time. Nintendo announced the sequel at 2019’s E3 with Aonuma claiming that the game will “build atop the original’s world with a new story and gameplay elements.” We know little about the game and expectations are high, but Nintendo always meets the high standards.


4. God of War 2: Ragnarok

Developer: SIE Santa Monica Studio

Publisher: Sony

Platform: Playstation 4

The God of War series was first introduced on the Playstation 2 in 2005. An action-adventure game that follows Kratos, a tragic Spartan warrior tricked into killing his family by the God Ares. I was into the first two but didn’t play rest. God of War for the Playstation 4 marked my return to the series, and I wasn’t disappointed. Unlike the previous games in the series, God of War took place in the world of Norse mythology. Everyone praised the game for its art direction, graphics, combat system, characters, and cinematic feeling. The father and son relationship stood out the most to me. Having a personal love of mythology and stylish violence, God of War, is my kind of game. A sequel was never in doubt, especially considering how it ended.


5. Horizon Forbidden West

Developer: Guerrilla Games

Publisher: Sony

Platforms: Playstation 4 & 5

New ip can be hit or miss, so when Horizon Zero dawn was released in 2017, I didn’t know what to expect. The series follows the story of Aloy, a hunter in a post-apocalyptic world, the player hunts robotic creatures with stealth, traps, and arrows. The series was well received, selling over 10 million copies. I’m too impatient for stealth games like Horizon Dawn, but the story and characters kept me interested. Once you get use to the gameplay, the game become captivating. Horizon Forbidden West promises to introduce more robotic creatures and new environments. In the sequel, humanity is facing an unknown threat, and Aloy traverses unfamiliar terrain in search of answers.

Top 5 Drama-Preserving Handicap in Anime

Shonen anime generally fall into the same trap. How do our heroes going to defeat the all-powerful villain? The trope general requires a hero of modest beginnings and his friends to travel the world trying to either stop a villain from gaining more power or getting released. In order to keep the series interesting, the villain is giving some kind of handicap to give the opposition a chance. This also happens to heroes sometimes, otherwise, the series would be boring if the hero won with one punch (LOL). 

In Soul Eater everyone has a handicap

All the characters in Soul Eater have some handicap that prevents them from being as strong as they possibly can. Black Star has a tendency to show off, preventing him from being an effective assassin. Death the Kid has a weird symmetry fetish, Stein goes insane, and Shinigami cannot move from the spot he’s standing on. 

Sesshomaru’s One Hit Kill

In Inuyasha, Sesshoumaru acquires a sword that can kill almost anything with one hit. This proves to be a problem for Naraku forcing him to kidnap Rin to prevent his destruction. The show ends if Sesshomaru gets his way right. Besides, Inuyasha is the star of the show and must defeat Naraku. 

Orihime’s personality

In Bleach, Orihime possesses the power to “reject physical events in a manner characters in-universe have speculated to be akin to time-space manipulation or completely rejecting the reality of the event having ever happened.” Her only limit is her personality. If she believes that something is impossible, it doesn’t occur to her, or she doesn’t believe she can do something, she can’t. If Orihime didn’t have this limit she would be unstoppable. 

Itachi would have won if he wanted to 

After years of anticipation fans finally got the battle between brothers, Sasuke and Itachi. This fight was epic. The two battled in an intense standoff that sees Itachi gain the final upper hand when he uses his Susanoo. Suddenly, he touches Sasuke’s head just like he did in their childhood and dies. Itachi had been suffering from a terminal disease. However, he wanted Sasuke to win anyway. Tobi notes this, saying that if Itachi wanted to win, Sasuke would be dead. 

Gohan’s broken arm

This is probably the most famous example of a drama saving handicap. After Gohan finally reaches SSJ 2, he dominates Cell. Nothing the villain could do harms the young Saiyan. Goku begs his son to end Cell, but the arrogance overcomes Gohan. After playing around with Cell, the embarrassed villain decides to blow up Earth. Goku sacrifices himself, dying to protect his home. Gohan finally realizes his error. However, due to his Saiyan cells, Cell returns stronger than ever. He kills Trunks and attempts to do the same to Vegeta. However, Gohan diving save keeps him alive. His arm is no longer any use. This results in the far more dramatic and entertaining Kamehame Ha clash, that Gohan wins with the help of his friends. Gohan wouldn’t have need aid if he wasn’t injured.

Source: TV Tropes

Top 10 Most popular manga based on MAL

10. Fairy Tail

Manga vols. 63

Aug 2006 – Jul 2017

MAL Score: 7.67

Fairy Tail is a manga and anime series created by Hiro Mashima. Published in Shounen Magazine in 2006, the series released 549 chapters before ending in 2017. Fairy Tail focuses on Natsu Dragneel, a fire mage, as he searches for his dragon foster father, Igneel, with his guild. 


09. My Hero Academia

Manga vols. 28 (Current)

Jul 2014 –

MAL Score: 8.37

MHA has been published in English by VIZ Media under the Shonen Jump imprint. My Hero Academia is still publishing, having just finished its 291st chapter. In MHA the majority of the population has special abilities called “Quirks.” Most go on to become heroes, while, many become villains. The main protagonist Izuku Midoriya (Deku) is one of the few born without a Quirk. However, his life changes when he meets his idol, All Might. He inherits All Might’s Quirk and joins an academy for potential superheroes. 


08. Bleach

Manga vols. 74

Aug 2001 – Aug 2016

MAL Score: 7.66

Bleach was once considered one of the “big 3” manga series along with One Piece and Naruto. Having sold more than 90 million copies it’s one of the most successful manga series of all time. Bleach follows Ichigo as he invades Soul Society to rescue his friend Rukia from execution. 


07. Death Note

Manga vols. 12

Dec 2003 – May 2006

MAL Score: 8.73

Light Yagami is a brilliant high school student that finds a notebook called the “Death Note.” Inside the book, reads the message: “those whose names are written in it shall die.” Light tests this message and when he learns that it works he embarks on a killing spree under the name “Kira.” However, the mastermind detective “L” and the police aim to track him down. 


06. One Punch-Man

Manga vols. 22 (Current)

Jun 2012 –

MAL Score: 8.75

Saitama is an “ordinary” hero that trained for three years, gaining so much strength that he can defeat most enemies with one punch. However, he becomes bored with the ease with which he defeats the villains. He joins the Hero Association along with his pupil, Genos. They quickly rise up the ranks of the association. 


05. Tokyo Ghoul

Manga vols. 14

Sep 2011 – Sep 2014

MAL Score: 8.54

Ghouls are beings that feed on the human race. In response, the Commission of Counter Ghoul organization has been established. The CCG hopes to exterminate the monsters but they can blend into society posing as humans. Ken Kaneki becomes part Ghoul after he’s attacked by one on a date. As he makes peace with his transformation he finds himself at the center of the war between the Ghouls and CCG. 


04. Naruto

Manga vols. 72

Sep 1999 – Nov 2014

MAL Score: 8.07

Naruto is one of the greatest manga series ever created. Created by Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto has sold over 220 million copies, ranking fourth all-time. Naruto Uzumaki is an orphan ninja from Konoha. He dreams of becoming Hokage (the best ninja in the village). Having been shunned by the village, Naruto originally becomes a mischievous troublemaker. Over the series, Naruto becomes the ninja he hopes to become, gaining the love and admiration of the village that once hated him. 


03. Berserk

Manga vols. 40 (Current)

Aug 1989 – 

MAL Score: 9.34

Guts is a former mercenary seeking vengeance after being betrayed by a former friend. Guts had a terrible childhood and set out on a mission that is filled with horrors and misfortune. Guts battles monstrous demons, cutting them down with his massive sword. Berserk is a harsh series that’s not for the faint of heart. 


02. One Piece

Manga vols. 97 (Current)

Jul 1997 – 

MAL Score: 9.09

The last of the “Big 3,” One Piece is considered by many to be the greatest manga series of all time. As of 2017, One Piece is the highest selling manga series with over 430 million copies sold. Gol D. Roger is about to be executed by the World Government before they kill him he confirms that a treasure called “One Piece,” exists somewhere on the Grand Line. This act inspires a new generation of Pirates. One such pirate is Monkey D. Luffy, who aims to get a crew, sail the seas searching for the One Piece, and becoming Pirate King in the process. 


01. Attack on Titan

Manga vols. 32 (Current)

Sep 2009 – 

MAL Score: 8.64

Hundreds of years ago humanity was attacked by massive creatures called Titans. These “Titans” eat humans whenever they can. Unable to combat the new threat humanity sought safety behind massive walls. Eren Yeager, Mikasa Ackerman, and Armin Arlert grow up in this new environment. However, what was once a peaceful life becomes a horror when a Titan burst through one of the walls. After losing his mother, Eren promises to eradicate the Titans from Earth. 

Source: MAL

My Top 5 Naruto Arcs

Chunin Exams

Manga Volumes: 4 – 13

Anime Episodes: 20 – 67

The Chunin Exams marks the moment we get to see the rest of the current ninja generation. We are introduced to the rest of the Rookie Nine, Team Guy, the Three Sand Siblings, and Orochimaru. Until this point, I found Naruto to be mediocre but characters like Rock Lee and Orochimaru made me fall in love with the series. This arc also displayed the value intellect was to ninja. The first phase of the exam required the genin to use their skills to acquire information. However, the most exciting part of this arc was the preliminaries. With too many teams passing the exam, the 20 remaining genin we pitched against one another to cut down the numbers. Some of the matches we duds, but a few are classics. The same is true of the finals matches between the surviving winners. 

Best Fights:

  • Orochimaru vs Sasuke
  • Rock Lee vs Gaara
  • Naruto vs Neji
  • Temari vs Shikamaru

Five Kage Summit

Manga Volume: 49 – 51

Anime Episodes: 197 – 214

This arc is filled with action but I think it’s most interesting for is the focus on the political aspect of Naruto. The arc centers on the Summit between the current Kages, Gaara, Onoki, Mei, A, and Danzo. While we’re familiar with Gaara, the other Kages are more of a mystery. Danzo uses Tsunade’s coma as an opportunity to claim the title of Hokage for himself. Danzo is revealed to have possession of the Sharingan. The Kages argue over their ideological differences, with A claiming (correctly) that each of the other villages used the Akatsuki to gain power. Of course, the summit is interrupted by Sasuke and the rest of Taka. In the fights that follow, A proves to be a powerhouse, and Onoki and Terumi show off some of their abilities. Finally, Madara declares war over the remaining tailed beast. 

Best Fights:

  • Sasuke vs The Kages
  • Killer B vs Kisame
  • Sasuke vs Danzo

Pain’s Assault

Manga Volume: 45 – 48

Anime Episodes: 152 – 175

The beginning of this arc introduces us to Killer B, the host of the Eight Tailed Beast. He quickly becomes a fan favorite, while the rapping is bad and stereotypical, he’s a fun character that gives Sasuke a fight. It’s also the first time that we witness a Jinchuriki fight alongside his beast. After this fight, Pain invades Konoha. It’s a devastating assault that results in the “death” of Kakashi and the destruction of Konoha. The highlight of this arc is the fight between Naruto and Pain, with the former using the senjutsu (Sage) techniques and the Wind Release: Rasenshuriken technique. Hinata confesses her love for Naruto and the latter finally meets his father. 

Best Fights:

  • Sasuke vs Killer B
  • Naruto vs Pain

Sasuke Recovery Mission

Manga Volume: 20 – 27

Anime Episode: 107 – 135

Sasuke defects from Konoha in pursuit of power. This marks the moment Sasuke becomes a villain. Tsunade sends a five-man genin squad to retrieve him. Lead by Shikamura, the team of Naruto, Neji, Choji, and Kiba face off against the Sound Four. This arc features several battles that felt consequential. Each fight showed the depth of skill each ninja from Konoha possed. Furthermore, we got to see the specific techniques of the Akimichi, Hyuga, and Inuzuka clans. While Sasuke was becoming a villain, Gaara and siblings became allies. Watching the siblings fight for Konoha gave me chills. Throw in drunken fist Rock Lee and the epic battle between Sasuke and Naruto, this is one of the best Naruto arcs. 

Best Fights:

  • Neji vs Kidomaru
  • Kiba/Akamaru vs Sakon/Ukon
  • Shikamaru vs Tayuya
  • Rock Lee vs Kimimaro
  • Gaara vs Kimimaro
  • Naruto vs Sasuke

Tale of Jiraiya the Gallant

Manga Volumes: 40 – 42

Anime Episode: 127 – 133

This arc is short but it was the most impactful for me. Jiraiya was always my favorite Naruto character. I loved everything about him, his character design, humor, and abilities. However, we never saw the extent of those abilities until this arc. Jiraiya investigates Pain, infiltrating Amegakure. While there he encounters former students Konan and Nagato. Pain gets introduced and he’s a stoic villain that plans on forcing the world to stop wars, by creating a jutsu powerful enough to “wipe away entire nations.” It’s not the most original of motives but Pain proves to be a formidable villain. The battle between the two is probably my favorite and what made Naruto the best shonen series. 

One of the Legendary Sannin finally got to fight with their full power. This fight perfectly balances the powerful techniques of Jiraiya and Pain, while including strategy, and skills that feel earned. When you feel like Jiraiya has defeated a mysterious opponent, it’s revealed (not completely to the audience) what Pain is. After Jiraiya loses his arm and has to face The Six Paths of Pain you not sure he can survive. However, just when we begin to think he will escape, he sacrifices his life to protect Konoha. It was a heartbreaking moment that made me cry. I think it’s the best Naruto arc ever.

Top 5 Studio 4°C Projects

Tweeny Witches

Studio 4°C’s first television series. Inspired by Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass, Tweeny Witches follows the story of a little girl that gets trapped in a magical world. 14 years before the main story, a Japanese archaeologist named Jidan falls into the magical realm and is imprisoned by a warlock. He eventually is rescued by a soldier named Atelia. They have a child together, however, he’s lost in the magic realm. Jidan has a daughter, Arusu the main character of the series. Together with her new friends, she tries to save the realm.

Asura’s Wrath

Asura’s Wrath is an action video game developed by CyberConnect2 and published by Capcom. Considered an “interactive anime” each level plays out like an episode of an anime series. Studio 4°C developed the dramatic and flashy Episode 11.5 “Forging Ahead” and Episode 15.5 “Defiance.” 

Children of the Sea

In 2019 Studio 4°C produced Children of the SeaBased on the manga of the same name, the film follows the story of a high school girl named Ruka. She spends some of her summer vacations at the aquarium where her father works. She meets two brothers that were raised by dugongs, a species of manatee. Together they experience supernatural events that affect marine life. 

The Animatrix

An animated anthology film, the Animatrix is nine short films based on the Matrix trilogy. The films tell the backstory of the original war between humans and machines. Studio 4°C produced two of the short films, The Second Renaissance Part I and Beyond. The first film sees humanity produce AI robots to serve them. In the second part of the film, a domestic android named B1-66ER kills its owner. It’s the first time an android has kill a human leading to a court case. Beyond focuses on a teen girl named Yoko that searches for her cat Yuki. Her cat is inside a “haunted” house that is revealed to be filled with glitches in the Matrix.

Spriggan

Adapted from the manga and inspired by the story of Noah’s Ark, Spriggan takes place after the Cold War. Unknown artifacts called OOPArt appear around the world. This results in a secret war between various groups and the ARCAM Corporation. The military arm of ARCAM uses elite soldiers known as Spriggans to prevent others from collecting the mysterious artifacts. 

Top 5 Studio Trigger Projects

Top 5 Studio Trigger Projects

Studio Trigger is a Japanese animation studio founded by two former Gainax employees Hiroyuki Imaishi and Masahiko Otsuka. The Studio Trigger is considered a successor to Gainax. Studio Trigger, Sanzigen, and Ordet joined the holding company Ultra Super Pictures. In 2018, Studio Trigger started a Patreon account that now raises $6,000 monthly. Since 2011, Studio Trigger a produced several high-quality anime series with a similar style to the Gurren Lagann series. 

Darling in the Franxx

science fiction romance series produced by Cloverworks and animated by Studio Trigger and A-1 Pictures, Darling in the Franxx is set in a dystopian future. In the Franxx universe, young people are manufactured to defend civilization. The story follows ten pilots, focusing on the pair, Hiro and Zero Two. The series uses symbolism from the mythological Jian. The series was praised for its “coming of age elements,” however, some of its content was criticized for sexually innuendo and pacing. 

Promare

Promare is one of the three films produced so far by Studio Trigger. Co-produced with XFLAG, Promare is set after a “calamity known as the Great World Blaze.” Half of the human population is killed. Several humans developed pyrokinetic abilities becoming known as Burnish. The firefighting group, Burning Rescue battles against the Mad Burnish, a terrorist group. Despite having a story that’s similar to the Fire Force series, Promare was generally well-received. Its colorful visuals, storytelling, and style received rave reviews. 

Kill La Kill

The first series created by Studio Trigger, Kill La Kill is an original work from the company. Kill La Kill tells the revenge story of Ryuko Matoi, as she seeks to avenge her father. She attends Honnouji Academy, where she comes into conflict with Satsuki Kiryuin. Kill La Kill features fanservice for both genders, high-quality animation, action, humor, and a shocking twist towards the end. The series was described as “magical girl anime on speed.” 

SSSS.Gridman

SSSS.Gridman tells the story of Yuta Hibiki, a high school student with amnesia. He’s given the mission to fight against Kaiju by Hyper Agent Gridman. Together they merge to defeat the Kaiju, aided by the Gridman Alliance. SSSS.Gridman has an intriguing villain and is an interesting mystery. Based on the series Denko Choujin GridmanSSSS.Gridman was a surprise hit in 2018. 

Little Witch Academia

The Little Witch Academia series has spawned two moviesLittle Witch Academia and Little Witch Academia: The Enchanted Parade, as well as a television series. Atsuko “Akko” Kagari enrolls in the magical school, Luna Nova Magical Academy. Determined to become a witch like her hero Shiny Chariot, Akko sets off to accomplish her dream. Akko is hard working but lacks magical abilities because of her non-magical bloodline. However, Akko’s belief in magic is second to none and she finally discovers her magical abilities. 

SSSS.Gridman Episode 1 & 2 Review

Top 5 Magical Girl series

Kill la Kill

Technically Kill La Kill isn’t a magical girl series, however, it does feature some elements from the genre. The series debuted in fall 0f 2013 and was produced by Studio Trigger. Ryuuko Matoi is a young girl seeking revenge for her father’s murder. Armed with half of a scissor blade she battles the student council at Honnouji Academy. Kill La Kill is most notable for its fanservice, displayed during the character’s transformation. 

Puella Magi Madoka Magica

A middle school girl named Madoka Kaname meets a transfer student named Homura. Elsewhere, a war between creatures called “witches” and magical girls. A cat-like creature named Kyubey offers Madoka a chance to save the world but things aren’t as they seem. Magical girl series are generally happy affairs will young girls and bright colors. Puella Magi Madoka Magica takes the magical girl series and twists it into a dark tale, focusing on topics like hope, despair, and entropy. The magical girls are put through psychological trauma. Puella Magi is considered to be in the deconstructive sub-genre of the Magical Girl Warrior genre. 

Pretty Cure

Pretty Cure is one of the longest-running magical girl series with over 600 episodes. Considered within the Action Hero sub-genre of the Magical Girl Warrior genre, Pretty Cure emphasizes action. Aimed at teenage and adult males, Pretty Cure features fanservice and focuses on the “power of friendship.” Toei Animation has produced a season since 2004, with the latest series premiering during the summer of 2020. 

Cardcaptor Sakura

Also within the Magical Girl Warrior genre, Cardcaptor Sakura is a neo-classical sub-genre. An old school magical girl comes of age in the modern age. One of the most famous Magical Girl series, Cardcaptor Sakura was created and written by CLAMP. Following a young girl named Sakura Kinomoto, who releases the tarot-like cards with magical powers. She is tasked with recovering those cards with the aid of her friends Tomoyo and Kerberos. 

Sailor Moon

If there’s a pioneer for the Magical Girl genre, Sailor Moon is it. Beginning as a manga series in the early 1990s, Sailor Moon follows the life of clumsy, whiny school girl Usagi Tsukino. When she learns that she was the Reincarnation of an “ancient lunar warrior from the Moon Kingdom,” Usagi is tasked with saving the Earth. Usagi is joined by her mentor, Luna, and fellow Sailor scouts, Sailor Mars, Mercury, Venus, and Jupiter. Sailor Moon remains one of the most popular anime and manga series, as well as being one of the series that started America’s love of anime. 

Top 5 Anime Afros

Anime characters often sport wild hairstyles. However, most hairstyles are usually long or spikey. Some characters wear Afros. Generally, this style is a large, rounded style created by combing one’s hair from the scalp with a pix. The hairstyle is more common with characters of African descent, however, in anime hair texture doesn’t matter. Here’s the top 5:

5. Atsuko Jackson

The outlaw vigilante from the Michiko to Hatchin series, Atsuko a black Brazilian protagonist. She has a massive blond Afro that contrasts beautifully with her dark brown skin. 

2. Favaro Leone

A self-proclaimed “ladies man,” Favaro is a selfish (at least at first) main character in the Shingeki no Bahamut series. He’s a bounty hunter that ends up transporting a demon named Amira. Favaro has several distinct qualities like his facial scar, and demon tail but his orange Afro stands out. 

3. Mr. Satan

Mr. Satan or Hercule Satan is the World Martial Arts Champion from Dragon Ball Z. His real name is Mark. He won his Championship without going through Goku or the Z Fighters. Mr. Satan is known for his personality, handlebar mustache, sideburns, and Afro. Later in the series, his trademark Afro features a natural bald spot. 

2. Brook

The musician from the Straw Hat Pirates, Brook is the Yomi Yomi no Mi devil fruit user. Before his death, Brook was a skinny man with a goatee and sideburns. After head died, the only hair that remained on the head was his Afro. Brook resembles rockers, Ozzy Osbourne, Jimi Hendriks, and Slash. 

1. Afro Samurai

The main protagonists of the Afro Samurai series is named Afro. A super serious and quiet character, Afro’s most exciting characteristic is his large flowing Afro. His fro isn’t round but long and messy, coupled with his extremely long headband it’s almost another character. 

Top 5 Anime Vampires

Dio Brando from Jo Jo Bizarree Adventures

Dio Brando

Brando is the main antagonist of Part 1 and 3 of the series JoJo Bizarre Adventures. A vampire and Stand user, Dio is responsible for Jonathan Joestar’s death and the ability of the Joestar family to use Stand power. Abused by his father, Dio became manipulative, violent, and lacks empathy. His Stand, The World, is a “humanoid Stand that specializes in melee attack,” it’s capable of stopping time. 

Mikaela Hyakuya

Mikaela is turned into a vampire by Krul Tepes, like Yuichiro Hyakuya he possesses the seraph gene. He was abandoned by his parents and was taken in by the Hyakuya orphanage. After becoming an incomplete vampire he develops fangs and pointed ears, he becomes complete after drinking Yu’s blood and his eyes turn red. Unlike other vampires, Mika doesn’t view humans as livestock. He also maintains his love of family. 

Shinobu Oshino 

Shinobu is a former human child named Laura who was cursed into causing anyone in her presence to commit suicide. She was turned into a powerful vampire named Kiss-Shot Acerola-Orion Heart-Under-Blade. She was the only daughter of a noble family and was famous for her beauty. Wishing that people would see her for what’s inside, she was granted her wish by a witch. Unfortunately for Shinobu, her inner beauty was more alluring. This lead to people committing suicide including her parents. The witch warned her to avoid people. 

Alucard

The main protagonist of the Hellsing series. Alucard is the most powerful weapon of the Hellsing Organization. He’s considered to be the most powerful vampire in the series. Alucard can appear as whatever he wishes, although he typically appears as a young man. Alucard is extremely cruel when he fights, often disabling and humiliating his opponents before shooting them. Alucard is also arrogant which can lead to him being taken by surprise in battle. Alucard is envious of humanity. Unlike himself, humans endure old age and death. He becomes enraged when Anderson stabs himself with Helena’s Nail, as he saw it as making the same mistake he made. As a vampire, he has super strength, speed, reflexes, endurance, regeneration, shapeshifting, telepathy, and many more abilities. 

D

Vampire Hunter D is a dhampir (half-vampire/half-human) that travels searching for Nobility. D is superior to most dhampirs, this is hinted at as being due to a connection to the Sacred Ancestor and experimental crossbreeding. D is considered so gorgeous that men and women are attracted to him. He’s described as being “between 17-18 years with a milky white complexion, a powerful frame, and a low voice.” When D drinks blood he transforms into a full vampire. Emotionally, D is largely emotionless, regardless he’s selfless. Like most immortals, D hasn’t aged and is over 10,000 years old. He can regenerate, survive nearly being destroyed, has superhuman strength, speed, durability, reflexes, stamina, and is a genius. At some point, D developed the ability to alter reality. D also has a symbiotic left hand that talks and have supernatural powers. 

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